Transportation

MTO Seeks Public Input on Cycling Strategy

By Ryan McGreal
Published January 09, 2013

The Ontario Government is currently soliciting public feedback on the Ministry of Transportation's Cycling Strategy, which has the following three goals:

The MTO first released a cycling strategy in 1992 with the goal of encouraging more cycling across the province. After 20 years, "the time has come to have a refreshed approach to encourage cycling in the province and ensure the safety of all road users."

Citizens can follow this link and click the "Submit Comment" button to get to the feedback form. The deadline for submissions is January 29, 2013.

The 2012 Ontario Coroner's Report on Cycling recommended that the Province develop an Ontario Cycling Plan to help guide policy development and to encourage cities to adopt a "complete streets" approach that focuses on the safety of all street users.

Ryan McGreal, the editor of Raise the Hammer, lives in Hamilton with his family and works as a programmer, writer and consultant. Ryan volunteers with Hamilton Light Rail, a citizen group dedicated to bringing light rail transit to Hamilton. Several of his essays have been published in the Hamilton Spectator. Ryan also maintains a personal website and has been known to post passing thoughts on twitter.

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By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted January 09, 2013 at 13:36:11

Here's the text of my submission:


The proven way to increase both the rate and safety of cycling is to ensure that cities build comprehensive, continuous bike lane networks - particularly using physically separated bike lanes.

The evidence clearly shows that the safety of cycling is a function of how many people are on bikes, and the rate of cycling is a function of how complete the infrastructure is.

If the Province is serious about increasing the rate of cycling significantly, cities must be required to design streets to include continuous bike routes following evidence-based best practices.

A bike helmet law would be a dangerous distraction that would shift the focus of safety from the cycling environment to individual cyclists, while at the same time deterring people from cycling and therefore increasing the danger to those remaining cyclists.

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By jason (registered) | Posted January 09, 2013 at 22:38:02

.....sigh.........

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted January 10, 2013 at 09:47:29

I have been slowly working on a blog post for bikehounds about this. I had better get cracking. The gist is - we need to ramp up education BIG TIME - it's cheap and easy. Then legislation - but not about helmets which have so little provable benefit that they become a huge red herring that derails actual progress. We need 3 foot passing rules and similar laws that ACTUALLY IMPROVE SAFETY. Stuff that other municipalities have already test driven and proven. Finally, infrastructure. I only put it last because it's the most expensive and will take the longest to implement. The other two could be up and running in less than a year if anyone cared to actually do it.

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By nah (anonymous) | Posted January 11, 2013 at 06:19:55 in reply to Comment 85047

>>if anyone cared to actually do it.
Exactly. Nobody cares so it won't get done at this time. We've got more pressing issues in our city before we go with more frills/perks like bike lanes.

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By jason (registered) | Posted January 11, 2013 at 13:29:15 in reply to Comment 85087

so now transportation infrastructure is a 'frill'?? Wow, what constitutes a basic necessity in your books?

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By LOL all over again (anonymous) | Posted January 14, 2013 at 14:05:51 in reply to Comment 85109

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By A Smith (anonymous) | Posted January 13, 2013 at 18:53:26 in reply to Comment 85109

http://bible.cc/matthew/5-39.htm

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By DowntownInHamilton (registered) | Posted January 13, 2013 at 08:07:58 in reply to Comment 85109

No, cycling infrastructure is a frill.

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted January 11, 2013 at 12:25:42 in reply to Comment 85087

This is a provincial plan, not a municipal one.

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By DowntownInHamilton (registered) | Posted January 13, 2013 at 08:08:43 in reply to Comment 85106

And if the province dictates it, the municipalities will follow suit, either by hook or by crook.

Do we have the money for that right now? No. Maybe when the good times roll again (if ever), but not right now.

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By Mal (anonymous) | Posted January 10, 2013 at 14:53:56

Launched quietly on the morning of November 30, the morning after the no-news-is-good-news Metrolinx Big Move announcement, this has managed to get precious little mainstreaam traction. Thanks for shining a light.

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