Route unsafe for cyclists

I am concerned about the new development at the base of Alder and St. Anns Rd. entering downtown Campbell River

Filed for publication with the Mirror

Dear Drew Hadfield, Transportation Manager, City of Campbell River,

I am concerned about the new development at the base of Alder and St. Anns Rd. entering downtown Campbell River. It leaves no shoulder for bike commuters or a designated bike lane. It forces bikes either into the middle of the lane or up onto the sidewalks which is illegal and a risk for pedestrians.

We are a one-car family, therefore, myself and my children – ages six and nine – commute by bike five days a week. Currently, there are no safe ways for us to enter the downtown core or for bike commuters to access the Quadra ferry. There are two designated bike lanes that come into downtown from Thulin St. and Birch St. that join Alder in front of city hall. At that point I am forced into traffic on St. Anns or if I am with my children, we ride on the sidewalk. Another route to enter downtown is from Thulin to 6th St. and onto the Old Island Highway.

This route is also very unsafe on the Island Highway due to speeding cars and big trucks. We ride on the side walk again for safety. Dogwood from 9th St. is steep, busy and not a good place for a bike to enter downtown. Our other crossing is at Greenwood and 9th. Here there is limited visibility and no cross walk.

At this crossing we would love to see a pedestrian signal as this route is heavily used by pedestrians and cyclists.

Our nine-year-old daughter Anna is a great inspiration to us. At the beginning of the school year she decided that she is only going to travel to school under her own power. Our school is 2.4 km away and she has ridden her bike ever day but one.

The one day she walked was because mom thought it was too frosty to bike. Our son Gavin who is six has also biked almost every day this year. They bike about 5 km per day. My children and I commute to downtown by bike at least weekly to go to the library and gymnastics.

I challenge decision makers at city hall to commute just from city hall to downtown for one week to understand how it feels on a bike in traffic. Now think of travelling that same route with young children. I hope there is a lot more we can do to make our city bike friendly.

With the new development on St. Anns and Alder, the two major bike routes we have now end at city hall with no safe way to enter downtown.

Please consider a designated bike lane and a bike friendly crossing signal at 9th and Greenwood.

Please contact me at this e-mail for further observations and solutions.

Cheryl Chatterton

Campbell River