Cycling advocates push back over call to remove King Street bike lane
Published Thursday, August 1, 2019 6:56PM EDT
Pushback is coming from London's cycling community after Councillor Stephen Hillier called for the removal of the new King Street bike lane.
Cyclist Abe Oudshoorn is calling on supporters of the bike lane to email city council, "It's very important for Londoners to reach out and let councillors know what they think.”
Recently, Hillier emailed his council colleagues suggesting they reconsider the decision to replace street parking and some loading zones with the temporary bike lane.
The $600,000 bike lane officially opened just two months ago, but several businesses say the change has taken a bite out of their bottom line.
Still, city staff say it's too early to draw any significant conclusions about the number of cyclists using the lane.
In a statement to CTV News they say, “We have only conducted some very preliminary cycling counts. Based on this limited information we have counted up to 77 cyclists using the new lane between the hours of 7- 9 a.m.”
Oudshoorn also points to the impact of construction detours, “Dundas and York Street are both closed to cars and I really don't think we should make any decisions related to traffic flow in the middle of the construction.”
On Wednesday Hillier admitted his proposal faces a political obstacle.
Only a councillor who supported green-lighting the construction back in March can bring forward a motion to reconsider it at the Civic Works Committee.
That’s a short list. Only ward 12 Councillor Elizabeth Peloza, and she’s not interested.
“I will not have an interest in bringing forward a motion to reconsider what we have done. They have just gone in, it's been about six weeks. For the most part I've seen cyclists being very happy.”
That means Hillier may have to find another political route if he wants the bike lane removed.
Plus, the bike lane is already a temporary one. Eventually it will be replaced by a Bus Rapid Transit lane.