Over the past few months, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has undertaken a Safety and Speed Review of highways between communities in B.C. The British Columbia Cycling Coalition has strong concerns about traffic speeds on British Columbia’s roads and in particular their effect on the safety and comfort of people cycling.
In our response to the Review, we recommended that speed limit increases not be considered on any highway unless there are adequate facilities present for cyclists of varying abilities and comfort levels and that a review of cycling facilities, maintenance procedures and cycling collisions be undertaken in conjunction with the speed limit review.
Representatives of the BCCC and our member organizations attended open houses, participated in the Twitter Town Hall, and met with the Speed Review Team. We also submitted recommendations to the Review team and copied them to Minister Stone. In particular, we are concerned that the Review materials did not mention cycling nor did the feedback forms ask for input on cycling conditions. In response to our letter, the Minister stated that:
It is important to keep in mind that the focus of this review is on rural highways, and to that end, the ministry is looking at ways to improve cycling conditions along these roadways through such measures as the installation of bike paths, where possible, and the ongoing monitoring of maintenance activities. Expect the findings of the the Review to be available this spring.
We strongly recommend that the Province take advantage of this opportunity to ensure that cycling facilities meet or exceed the standards for the actual speed of vehicles on highways. Unfortunately, the majority of B.C.’s highways, including some newer ones like the Sea to Sky, provide sub-standard cycling conditions. An increase in traffic speeds would compound the difficulties cyclists already face. We are concerned that increased speed limits would not only affect the safety of cyclists but also discourage people from cycling for transportation, recreation and tourism. This may well affect the future growth of cycling and the large quality of life and economic benefits that cycling already contributes, and is poised to further contribute, to British Columbia.
- Write Minister Stone – While the public input opportunities for the Safety and Speed Review have ended, it is still a good idea to write the Hon. Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Minister.Transportation@gov.bc.ca regarding cycling safety. Copy Transportation Critic, Claire Trevena, Claire.Trevena.MLA@leg.bc.ca and your MLA. Please relate your personal experience regarding safety issues and speed on B.C. roads.
- Read and endorse our Position Statement
- Join the BC Cycling Coalition. Your support makes our campaigns and programs possible
- Share this campaign widely