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October 28, 2017 2:43 am

City to Examine Bike Lane Parking Ban

Monday, August 31, 2015 @ 7:09 PM

share the roadPrince George, B.C. – Since first raised two weeks ago, the idea of  banning parking  in  bike lanes on arterial and collector roads in the City of Prince George has been as divisive as a  cement median in a highway.

While Council  unanimously  supported the motion to have City Staff  “consider and report back on options for the removal of onstreet parking on arterial roadways, in accordance with Section 5.2.4 of the City’s Active Transportation Plan ”

That section of the plan outlines the location and  width of bicycle lanes  and  states:

Frequent parking in bicycle lanes impedes the functionality and safety of the facility, and should therefore be controlled.

  • On arterials, on-street parking should be removed where bicycle lanes are necessary. Parking demand can generally be accommodated on the side streets and in parking lots. The removal of parking conflicts on arterial roads also improves traffic flow and safety on main routes. Buses stopping briefly for passengers are not generally a major impediment to bicycle traffic. However, pullouts should be used where possible, and especially at timing points and exchanges.
  • On collectors with at least 11.5 metres width, a single bicycle lane should be provided on one side of the street with restricted parking, and a shared parking/bicycle lane should be provided on the other side of the street  The parking side should be selected based on the following considerations (in order of priority):
    • abutting a sidewalk
    • maximizing the parking supply;
    • facilitating snow removal; and
    • minimizing the pedestrian crossings.
    • The selected parking side should be consistent between blocks to minimize transitions.

it was Councillor Jillian Merrick who championed the  move saying she knows there will be conflicts on  some roads which have driveway access.  She  is hopeful  staff can return with a plan that will be  place  for  the 2016 biking season.   Some roadways  pose more  difficulties  than others, and Merrick would like to see staff come back  with  a plan to  deal with the “easy ones’ first. Merrick also stressed  this is only about the existing 36 kilometres of  bike lanes already identified.

“There will be some areas that will be  relatively  quick fixes” says City Manager Kathleen Soltis.

“I think we have to be very careful with implementation” said Councillor Albert Koehler  “Generally I think it is a good approach but it has to be fine tuned”  he is hoping there will be some sort of  consultation with a variety of  people in the community.

Councillor Murry Krause  noted  “They aren’t bike lanes if they are full of cars.”

Councillor  Frank Everitt  says  he  thinks it is important  there be an education  program to  make  drivers of vehicles and  riders of bicycles  aware of the  rules of the road.

“There is no doubt  we are really in no man’s land” says Mayor Lyn Hall “We have bikes, we have cars,  we  have  bike lanes with  bicycles painted on them, but no one seems to know what to do with them.”  He suggests  the  issue be added to the  neighbourhood meetings to get a feel from  more people in the community about the matter.





We can’t seriously be considering banning parking on streets that have bicycle lanes. Everyone in Prince George knows that there are very few people who actually bike, and those few only do so for 6 months of the year.

The problem is not the bike lanes, it is the few people who want bike lanes. There numbers do not justify making things more difficult for everyone else in the City to accommodate a few bikers who come along in a 24 hour period.

Give bikers the option of using the sidewalks when necessary and leave the parking places as they are.

Electric assist bikes are putting many more bikes on the road . They can help you up hill for about 30 kilometres . Koops sells them . They cost pennies commuting . Try it . You’ll love it . I don’t know if Koops does test rides but they should . Sure has helped this old guy with bad knees stay on my bike .

C’mon folks, there is a lot of pavement out there, enough for all to share. Let people who attend special events park on the bike lanes. If we all drove more defensively, and that includes the bike riders, there shouldn’t be a problem.

What exactly is the point of a bike lane if you have to swing out into traffic because cars are parked where you are supposed to be riding?

Surely there has to be a compromise somewhere between “ride your bike on the sidewalks and get in the way of pedestrians” and “parking shall forever be banned because someone in a bike may come along”?

How about identifying a “commuting corridor” or those streets where bike traffic is most apt to be and ensuring that they have free access to ride without having to worry about vehicular traffic? You could even manage it so that the bike lanes have to be empty at certain hours or during the non-winter months. Enforcement would have to be stepped up to ensure that people respected the rules, but once people got used to the arrangement, I don’t think it would be THAT big of a deal.

About 5:45 this evening, I drove the total distance of Ospika from Tyner to 5th Avenue. I saw only two bikes – and get this!: the two bikes were riding side by side with ONE in the ‘car lane’.
Now, Jillian: does that not make you wonder if ‘reserved’ bike lanes are necessary? I think this is like trying to kill a fly with a sledgehammer.
How about forgetting about the pet bike lane project and instead invest the money in a separate Bike Trail from the north end of Ospika to Otway Nordic Centre located between the road and the railway. This could be similar to the paved bike way from UNBC to Ospika/Tyner, but wider to accomodate the side-by-side riders going each way – in other words: wide enough for four bike riders.

People seem to be forgetting that the roads under consideration are ALREADY bike lanes. this proposal does not suggest building more bike lanes or really spending any more money. All it asks is that administration find a way to get cars out of the existing bike lanes so that they can be used for what they were intended for.

And yes, part of that should include extra enforcement of the traffic rules, for BOTH bikes and cars to keep EVERYONE safe.

I’ve also noticed that people see what they want to see. I see bikes because I use a bike. You who don’t ride don’t see bikes to count the numbers because you aren’t using them.

“You who don’t ride don’t see bikes to count the numbers because you aren’t using them.”

That is a statement without any significant foundation. Other than youth, most people who ride bikes also drive cars whether only on occasion or most of the time when they travel from one place to the other. That means that those bike riders who also have a driver’s licence, whether they do it for exercise or use it to be green and save gasoline, or simply ride short distances because it is quicker if they just need to pick up a loaf of bread at the corner grocery store are both aware of the challenges of riding bikes as well as the challenges of driving a car. In both cases it is incumbent of the driver of the automobile as well as the rider of the bicycle to be aware of the traffic around them, including pedestrians, and those on scooters for the disabled as well as cars and bikes exiting from a private driveway and entering the traffic route.

To suggest that drivers who are driving as they should do not have any concept of how many people are riding bicycles is preposterous. In fact, in driving along streets in this community for a 15 minute period to drive 10 km at a speed greater than bicyclists, I will see a better slice of the number of bikers along that route than I would if I was biking the same route, taking 3 to 4 times as long and primarily because I would be travelling at similar speeds as the bikers along the same path.

There are so many issues facing our City! THIS is the one that Merrick wants to focus on??

I knew there was a reason that I would never vote for her!

We have absolutely no data which is based on one or more of the accepted methods of counting bike traffic. Instead, people are arguing based on anecdotal data which is totally biased because that is human nature.

I am looking at reliable data. That should be the first step in any traffic engineering report. Planning bike lanes should not be handled differently than motorized vehicle traffic lanes when it comes to planning routes, route widths, surface materials, traffic control devices, etc.

It is simply poor planning.

BTW, the original arterial roads built west of the bypass in the late 1960 and early 1970 were built to the width they were built to ensure that other uses such parking, stopping to let people off, bus stops, car break down, etc. to allow free flow of traffic on the 4 lane roads. Bicycling was not on the minds of people in Prince George, nor was it on the minds of people in Vancouver at the time, nor any other major city in Canada and the USA.

If we want bike lanes, we need to seriously look at not diminishing the best practices functionality of motorized travel lanes. Best practices bike lanes are physically separated from motorized travel lanes by more than a painted line, especially one which is not visible in the winter.

I continue to scratch my head that the safe, separated pathway built just a few years ago was not built to meet the 2011 active transportation plan to accommodate both pedestrians and bicyclists moving in both directions. The width in no way meets the required width for that. To make matters worse, they added a couple of feet of width to the repaving of Tyner for a substandard bike lane on a route which has a 70km speed limit for a significant distance. As it reaches the first subdivision entrance the shoulder stays the same width as it was originally, thus forcing bike riders into traffic without any signage to notify both drivers and riders of that fact.

The entire bike lane routes need to be examined for best standards, minimum standard, and unsafe for both bike riders and drivers of cars and trucks.

No parking on bike lanes period. Why even have them otherwise?

Merrick has no car… Musta recently bought a bike, hence her Mission to get more bike lanes.. Maybe she should learn how to ride a bike first

She campaigned on these stuff. She is keeping her campaign promises. We should b thanksful to have a councillor who actually does something.

Why the hate for making something useable for what it was designed for?

How many people do we have in Prince George that would use the bike lanes? This is not Vancouver, I think this is much ado about nothing.

Maybe Krause can rename “bike lanes”? Help him out folks with a name.

Didn’t I read somewhere she is a past president of the cycling club?

So she brought a personal bias and agenda to council and so far is the squeakiest wheel.

Regarding the cycling lane thing. I went down to the fair when it was here. Both the CN Center paved lot and the dirt lot were full, with miles of cars parked on Ospika both directions. If she gets her way, where are all those cars going to park next time a big event overflows the lots?

What about Rainbow park? They going to build a parking lot for it? Cuz it’s surrounded by bike lanes.

Is that little grant going to cover the $ million + dollar cost for a parking lot at Rainbow? Or are wedding parties supposed to taxi and bike down there for pictures?

What about othere events there?

So there are maybe a couple dozen people that commute to work on bikes in this city in the 6 months that they can before the snow flies. There are hundreds or maybe a few thousand recreational cyclists that occasionally want to pedal around.

We want to create onerous legislation and rules for them? How about the fact that this is a winter city? Most people drive because of commuting distances.

People who live up the Hart or out in Southridge are not likely to commute on bicycles or bring their kids to soccer on bikes.

Common sense is always trumped by the personal agenda of a few,it seems.

When is she going to start lobbying for chickens in our back yards in an urban environment?

I feel for the people living on Simon Fraser! I hope they flood the neighbourhood meetings to complain about this idiotic idea! Imagine wanting to have a few friends over and tell them they have to park on the side streets when they come. I know there is some idiotic idea of a two way bike lane, but I believe that contravenes the the law, riding against the flow of traffic?

Just saw a news broadcast from a city in the lower mainland showing a street with bicycles painted on the street but no actual bike lane.

I wonder how that is different?

Cars were parked on the curbs both sides.

I’m thinking the city designated those streets as bike routes and the bikes painted on the street are for raised awareness to enhance safety for cyclists, without restricting parking.

Just after that, noticed Ontario just passed a law… $395.00 fine for dooring a cyclist and 3 points.

That’s a step in the right direction.

These two solutions seem more common sense than expecting people to get to events in hot air balloons.

I’m hoping if this does go through, it’s on a test basis. Try it for a few years, see what happens. Kind of hard to say there are no cyclists when the bike lane they would use, is blocked. Until you actually create the route, you have no idea what the demand will be. If it turns out there is no demand, it’s not like it costs a fortune to switch them back to parking.

One could argue handicapped parking spaces are a waste of pavement, because after all, they are almost always empty. So society has made an accommodation to a minority group based on their need, not the general population’s overall convenience.

Counting cyclists is hard. Drive by the Otway parking lot any given Friday night and it’s full of cars. There’s probably a 100 mountain bikes riding the trails, and yet, I’m surprised if I run into more than a few when I’m on the same trails. 30 km of trails hides over a 100 bikes.

For the soccer parents, this is a conundrum. On one hand, nice to be able to park close to the kids soccer field, on the other hand, would be nice to know there’s a bike lane for your child to ride on if they choose use a bike to get to soccer practice – or, just choose to bike for fun and exercise.

A livable city is all about compromises. True, removing parking will be an inconvenience for motorists – but none of them will be injured or die because of it, in fact, they’ll get a little extra exercise which is good for them. But for the cyclists, the bike lane can mean avoiding injury, and for the cars, it can mean no longer having to slow down as a bike moves into the travel lane to go around parked cars. A test period would go along way to seeing if this is a reasonable balance of needs.

I drive to work every day.. and can count the bikes on the road easily.. NONE..

Have Bill Phillips be a consultant in the issue. After all this must be Harpers fault eh Bill.

This morning Samsung announced that they will be marketing a 100 kilometre range battery for bicycles . That’s a three fold increase . This doesn’t change much in canada but it’s going to change the rest of the world in a huge way really fast . It will effect the demand for petrol .

Ataloss and the bikes can be recharged off your unicorn system.

Now this would get Merrick all excited especially the fines. In Australia.

New laws for motorists passing cyclists

Motorists must stay wider of cyclists by giving a minimum of:
•1m when passing a cyclist in a 60km/h or less speed zone
•1.5m where the speed limit is over 60km/h.

Passing a cyclist means that you (as a driver) and the cyclist are travelling in the same direction. This includes when you are travelling side-by-side in separate lanes on a multi-lane road. It does not apply if you are travelling in opposite directions, or when you are on the other side of the road to a cyclist.

The passing distance is measured from:
•The rightmost part of the bicycle, or the person on the bicycle
•The leftmost part of the vehicle, or something sticking out from the vehicle (e.g. a side mirror).

The minimum passing distance applies even if the cyclist is riding around an obstacle.

This law is a first in Australia and is being trialled in Queensland for 2 years. The aim is to improve safety for cyclists on our roads.

These new road rules apply to all motor vehicles—including cars, motorcycles, heavy vehicles and public transport vehicles.
•Factsheet and frequently asked questions (PDF, 300KB)


As a driver, you will get 3 demerit points and a $353 fine if you do not give the minimum distance when you pass a cyclist. If the matter goes to court, a maximum fine of $4,712 can apply.

here are the bicycle rules


seamutt, did you see the cycling fines, on that site? Failing display light at night $117, Failing to stop at a stop sign $353. This is just 2 there must be at least 100 different fines for bikes. Fines are the same for motorists. And there is no minimum age for the fines. This is the law and fines Prince George should have.

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