King Street cycle track good for business
 

In response to the Free Press article, Downtown merchants raise concerns over King Street cycle lanes, below is a brief summary of some of the benefits of the upcoming King Street cycle tracks on business:

Downtown has seen many changes in how people get around in recent years. Construction has displaced typical commutes, city buses moved permanently to King and Queens, and the new Fanshawe campus and residential developments have all affected getting around downtown. We can understand why you may feel uncertain about another change this spring to add cycle tracks to King Street.

To ease your worries, experience from other cities has shown bike lanes are good for business. Bloor Street in Toronto saw an increase in sales of 4.5% in the first year after protected bike lanes were installed[1]. Businesses in Calgary and Vancouver have cited an influx of new customers[2]. And a study in Portland[3] revealed that cyclists spent more per month than their driving counterparts. All this leads to good news for business.

Additionally, making it safe for people to cycle on King will dramatically increase the number of people who choose to bike. Laurier Avenue in Ottawa saw an increase of 330% over 5 years with cycle tracks[4]. More people cycling will free up road space, lead to a safer and more vibrant King Street for all users, and make our air cleaner.

The installation of cycle tracks on King Street this spring will be a game-changer for people on bikes, will offer additional waiting space for transit users, and will produce a more vibrant street. We cannot guarantee the future, but cycle tracks on King should be a very good thing for your business.

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[1] Bloor Street West Bike Lane Pilot Project Evaluation

[2] Small Businesses are Changing their Tune on Bike Lanes

[3] Cyclists Spend More Each Month than Drivers

[4] History of Ottawa’s First Segregated Bike Lane

 
2018 AGM
 

On Thursday November 29th, we hosted our annual general meeting at the new Squeaky Wheel space. We had a great turnout to hear about the year that was, elect new members to the board, and meet other people who want to see London become a cycling-city.

If you couldn’t make it but want to see what we were up to this past year, check out this presentation. If you’d like to support our work, please consider becoming a member.

We will introduce our new board members individually in short-order, but for now here are the names of our current board, including returning directors:

AGM2018.jpg

Left to Right: Daniel Hall (Executive Director), Rebecca Henderson (CAC Representative), Luis Patricio (chair), Hailey Tallman, Marna Fujimoto-Pihl (secretary), Ben Durham, Molly Miksa (Communications), Trevor Dias (Squeaky Wheel Liaison- absent), and Becca Minielly (absent)

We’re all eager to make cycling a preferred option for daily transportation in our city!

 
Daniel HallComment
Bikes on Dundas
 

London Cycle Link has been campaigning for safe and convenient cycling infrastructure on Dundas Street between Old East and Downtown for almost 3 years because it's one of the best opportunities to encourage more people to ride. The City of London is currently studying this cycling connection in conjunction with creating specific land use policies for Old East, and presented theirpreferred solution at a public meeting on November 1.  See this map for part of the plan. 

Let's start with the good news: the City is proposing cycle tracks (protected bike lanes) for the entire corridor and removing a lane of on-street parking in OEV to widen sidewalks and allow for patios and landscaping. This would make the village a very nice place to be, except the current plan doesn't allow for convenient cycling in both directions. Most of the bike lanes occur on Dundas Street which is our preferred solution - put the bike lanes where people want to go - but in the narrow area of OEV they have split eastbound cyclists on Dundas and westbound cyclists on Queens. 

The bad news: placing one direction on Dundas and the other on Queens is not intuitive nor direct and it wouldn't stop people on bikes from continuing to ride westbound on Dundas - without any safe infrastructure. We have proposed a compromise that allows for increased sidewalk width and landscaping, but doesn't come at the expense of safe and convenient cycling. See here.

Next steps: We've met with the City and asked them to review our proposal and see if it's feasible. We'll continue to advocate for convenient bike lanes in both directions on Dundas and attempt to make this plan the best it can be for people on bikes, business owners, and patrons.  We welcome your feedback and support.

 
Molly MiksaComment