Make the Sea to Sky Highway Safer for Cycling
The Sea to Sky corridor (Highway 99 and secondary roads) connects Horseshoe Bay, Squamish, Whistler, Pemberton, Mt. Currie and on to Lillooet. The natural beauty of the corridor and recent improvements to the highway and roads to Squamish Valley, Callaghan Valley, Pemberton Meadows and Portage Road to D’Arcy, has enhanced the attractiveness of the area for motorists and cyclists alike.
The Whistler Cycling Club has submitted the following recommendations to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. We believe these would help improve safety and enjoyment for all road users in the Sea to Sky corridor.
- Frequently sweep highway shoulders to remove gravel, glass and debris.
After the initial sweep in the spring gravel, glass and debris accumulate on the highway shoulder, especially in areas with a concrete barrier.
- Repair cracked, uneven and damaged Highway 99 shoulders, particularly between Whistler and Pemberton.
- Repaint white fog line separating travel lane from shoulder (a highly visible fog line helps to delineate the shoulder area for cyclists).
- Repaint bicycle stencil pavement markings on shoulders through urban areas and at highway intersections.
- Establish more frequent communication between cycling community, maintenance contractors and MoTI.
Infrastructure Enhancements and Investments
- Repave Highway 99 from Whistler to Pemberton, including adequate (ideally 2.0m minimum 1.5m) paved shoulder.
- Address cycling safety hazard due to narrow shoulders along Porteau Bluffs.
- Address extreme safety hazard for cyclists of the very narrow northbound shoulder from Britannia to Murrin Park.
- Install additional regulatory signage to encourage drivers and cyclists to share the road.
- Install cycling tourism signage.
- Replace, move or mark dangerous storm drain catch basins.
- Widen and/or repave secondary roads.
Communication, Education, Regulation
- Utilize overhead digital signs at Alice Lake and Alta Lake Road to encourage drivers to watch for cyclists.
- Create laws to adopt a mandatory 1.0-1.5 m separation between vehicles and cyclists, with greater separation in areas with higher speed limits.
- Clarify existing cycling laws (e.g. riding two abreast) and educate cyclists and motorists on the laws and etiquette of shared road use.
- Improved education of both cyclists and motorists would be beneficial.
Motor Vehicle Speed
Highway 99 Speed Limits were increased in 2016 on the following sections:
- Horseshoe Bay/Squamish: 90 km/km
- Squamish/Whistler: 100 km/h
- Whistler/Pemberton: 90 km/h
These increased speed limits between Horseshoe Bay and Pemberton,
coupled with higher traffic volumes, have increased the risk and consequences of
collisions with cyclists.
- Wider shoulders would provide more separation between cyclists and high-speed traffic.
- More frequent shoulder sweeping and shoulder repairs would reduce the need for cyclists to move into the travel lane.
Your generous contribution will help us mobilize the support needed to convince the Provincial and Federal Governments to make bold investments in cycling & walking through:
- Outreach to organizations and businesses
- Petitioning to show the government that a lot of people support better cycling
- Meeting with politicians and staff
- Press releases and op-eds