Tbnewswatch Local News
Sunday July 5 2015
3:25 PM EDT
2014-05-01 at 15:09

Bike lanes open

Local cyclist Ken Shields bikes in the designated bike lane on Vickers Street Thursday afternoon.
Jodi Lundmark, tbnewswatch.com
Local cyclist Ken Shields bikes in the designated bike lane on Vickers Street Thursday afternoon.
By Jodi Lundmark, tbnewswatch.com

THUNDER BAY -- Bike lanes in the city are officially open for the season.

Thursday marked the opening of the bikes lanes and it's a day the city's active transportation coordinator Adam Krupper has been waiting a long time for.

"The weather is a little drizzly and rainy but at least it's not snowing. It's a good start," Krupper said.

The opening of the lanes means parking restrictions now apply in the designated cycling lanes and motorists also can't drive in the lanes either, particularly when turning right at an intersection.

New bike lanes will also be painted on Pioneer Drive, Valley Street, Winnipeg Avenue and Grenville Avenue.

The city is also trying something new called painted edge lines on Ray Boulevard, McKibbin Street and Ford Street.

The edge line is a painted line 1.2 metres from the curb where parking is still allowed.

"It allows motorists and cyclists to recognize the route as a cycling route," Krupper said.

While there have been calls for a north-south link in the Memorial Avenue area by the cycling community, the city doesn't have plans in the immediate future for a project like that.

However, city project engineer Mike Vogrig said there is work being done on Golf Links Road that includes an off-road, north-south route.

"Once that work is complete, there will be a link from Red River Road to the Harbour Expressway," Vogrig said, adding there is also a plan for road work on Balmoral Avenue.

That project spans from Lakehead University to Waterloo Street and it could include more off-road cycling trails.

The city will be working on the Golf Links and Balmoral projects over the next five to seven years.




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Eastender says:
50 years of safe cycling trumps two years of badly planned and implemented bike lanes. Recreational trails are nothing more than sidewalks with a dual purpose, walking and cycling, same rules apply. If only there were barriers between traffic and bike lanes, but there arn't. Thunder Bay streets are mostly not wide enough to accomodate separate bike lanes, parking lanes, and driving lanes. Just drive down John St. For an example. You are forced to drive over e ery pothole in the road just to stay in your proper lane. Bike lanes every where, nary a bike in sight. You think I am going to hit every pothole just to be technically correct and not drive in a bike lane when there are no bike riders in sight? I give bike riders every courtesy that is possible. I will slow down for them and give them a wide berth, but if it is convenient for me to drive in a bike lane to avoid a pot hole or puddle or someone on the centreline as often happens if no bikes are in sight, i will do so.
5/5/2014 11:18:38 AM
ken1 says:
Some sad uninformed comments here.
Yes there are bad drivers and bad cyclists here in Thunder Bay.
Protected Bike lanes will change that.
see www.memoriallink.ca
Bike Lanes separated from traffic by physical barriers allows bike riders from 8-80 years old travel safely access work, shopping, school and restaurants.
Rec trails are a completely different animal.
Bike lanes are about giving people the option of safely leaving their car at home.
Bike lanes slow people down and and increases business to for 200 meters on all sides of the protected bike lane.
5/5/2014 9:54:36 AM
Eastender says:
Those specific paved bike/ walking lanes were designed for cyclists and pedestrians. I have ridden on sidewalks when I considered the road too dangerouse, and I have ridden on the roads without bike lanes with no problems, except the occaisional idiot driver, but bike lanes wont prevent that. Why on earth cant cyclist ride on the side walk that was also intended for pedestrians. Cyclists are not motorized vehicles and have a respnosibility to not endanger pedestrians. A bicycle stops much quicker than a car. It should be mandatory for cyclists to have a warning device to signal their approach. Ihave ridden my bike in this city for over 50 years ( oops some personal information) i have never even come close to hitting a pedestrian. As a cyclist you are more of a pedestrian than a motorized vehicle, and the same rules should apply. If you are a runner, do you need a special lane, of course not. Then why would you need one for a bicycle. Just use common sense and courtesy.
5/5/2014 4:22:29 AM
caesarjbasquitti says:
When 'the quality of life' card from put on the election table, bike paths were mentioned....bike paths...let me repeat that bike paths NOT bike lanes on the busiest streets of the city ?

A bike lane, I have used them, are incorporated with a walking lane, like those around Boulevard Park, down McVicar's Creek, or the Waterfront...

Somehow, without any discussion, bike lanes were implemented a few months prior to the last election. A complex, unintegrated set of lanes on some of the busiest streets of the city; poor planning ?

Time to get rid of these bike lanes, and promote the concept of an integrated bike/walking path that runs through the city corridors, more scenic, more recreational than functional; let the bus system deal with that.

As Steeve Sleeve suggested, (its his idea) perhaps we can use sidewalks for bikes that travel as people do, and let other bikes use the streets the the rest of us ???

The current system is not worth it nor working ?
5/3/2014 11:50:51 PM
bay of blunders says:
I also forgot to mention something that came to mind regarding the costs and work to get these bike lanes painted.

Why not use prison inmates and people required to do community time or volunteer work for school or volunteers to do all the line painting and only have to pay a few supervisors to show them how to do the work and monitor it for the highest of quality as an end product. I think if the people who have the ability in the city to make these plans happen and implement it have no reason to not find the means to do this. With the savings in labour you will pay for the larger amount of paint required to paint full bike lanes and not just lines. As well public opinion should be taken into this as to the color that will be used so it blends in well with the local surroundings and character of neighborhoods.
5/3/2014 11:15:43 PM
Lpitura says:
Lol ok. I guess having unsupervised felons on the streets is a great idea. Painting the lines in mauve and herringbone grey to match neighbourhood themes...by hand. Great idea keep me coming!
5/4/2014 11:24:55 PM
bay of blunders says:

I strongly believe the current style and setup of our bike lanes is done
cheaply and dangerously.  We should be taking examples from other cities
with bicycle lane systems that have been in place for decades and which have
been proven to work efficiently and safely.


Also, I think that the way we paint this bicycle lanes can add a touch of
cleanliness and visual appeal to a city, especially in the busier areas around
shopping districts and downtowns.  Using bright color to color in the
entire bicycle lane seems to be much greater visibility and can be done to tie
in with the area's appeal.  Below is a link to a photo showing a great



5/3/2014 11:09:22 PM
thunderkol says:
Cant wait until they close.
5/3/2014 6:56:58 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
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Ringettemom says:
If people riding bikes bother you you need better driving skills.
I swear most people who post have never been outside their town province or country.
5/3/2014 5:39:58 PM
whatelseisnew says:
I believe that cyclists that don't hold a Drivers License should have to take a test and posses a Cyclists License. There are far too many bike riders on the road that don't have a clue on the rules of the road to the point some are even biking against traffic rather then with.

In saying that violators should be ticketed for breaking the law. If they are on the road they should have to follow the SAME rules as I have to under the Highway Traffic Act.
5/3/2014 4:58:11 PM
Girardin says:
If you people can't drive by a person on a bike without getting uptight and irritable I feel sorry for you!!

Sharpen up your own driving skills and quit complaining. Better yet get out in the world out of your vehicles get some exercise and fresh air of your own (hah)
5/3/2014 3:15:30 PM
Watchmaker says:
Absolutely, ticket and fine cyclists for not obeying the rules of the road, for riding on sidewalks etc. I am a cyclist in the summer months and I get angry at other cyclists who:
- ride without helmets
- fail to signal properly
- ride on the sidewalks
- ride against traffic

I also get angry at drivers who do the following while I am on my bike:
- run stop signs in front of me (what is your hurry?)
- fail to yield the lane to cyclists (dangerous to me and you)
- swear and make rude hand gestures to me while I am riding legally on the right hand side of the road (what did I do to you personally to generate such anger?)
- cut me off when you make a right hand turn (my closest calls have occurred due to drivers shooting past me to make the right instead of yielding the right of way)
- deliberately splash me from puddles on rainy days
5/3/2014 2:42:59 PM
Sinjo says:
Let's start with fines for cyclers riding in crosswalks on the wrong side of the street and ones who fail to obey stop signs on the side streets.
5/3/2014 8:06:30 AM
olddog says:
This City of Thunder Bay bus is stopped at the corner of Vickers Street and Victoria Ave. E
and is stopped in the bike lane. Then the driver proceeds across the intersection in the bike lane and cuts off the car that was in the straight through lane. Now if we can not educate our local drivers to how our bike lanes work, how can we expect drivers from other cities, provinces, states or countries to know our home made traffic laws work? I think the City should be rid of bike lanes and go back to following the Ontario Traffic Act before someone get killed.
5/3/2014 7:22:05 AM
tsb says:
Try sending the photo to transit. By knowing the bus number and the date and time the photo was taken, they can figure out exactly which driver did this and take some sort of measure to prevent a repeat.
5/3/2014 9:45:54 PM
karcat says:
To have safe bike lanes, all riders must have visable clothing so they can been seen by auto drivers, also all bike lanes to be painted
with orange florescent paint, then drivers and cycleists can see each other, have an e-bike and have no problemsn going across town, am 78 yrs old, and have respect for others, I also use florescent clothing at all times on bike .
ty my opinion.. PS hope others to do likewise
5/2/2014 2:37:16 PM
my 2 cents says:
let's see if I have this correct. Cyclists should not be on the sidewalk, are expected to ride on the right side of traffic and on the left side of parked cars. Yet when an designated lane is placed in the spot where they are supposed to be, drivers have an issue with it.
Makes me frightened of the driving skills the people of Thunder Bay possess. Yikes
5/2/2014 12:57:48 PM
udecide says:
I do not disagree with bike lanes BUT hopefully the police will pull over and charge bicyclists if they break any of the highway traffic act charges ( eg ) red lights, stop signs, fail to signal etc.
5/2/2014 11:12:04 AM
gerster says:
Thunder Bay drivers + Thunder Bay cyclist = danger!
5/2/2014 8:39:45 AM
unheard says:
Due to the poor planning and design
the city probably could be held liable for any accident
contact your lawyer
5/2/2014 7:45:08 AM
Timberrr says:
Designated bike lanes and the active trans position have been a poor investment for bikers. I choose where I ride in town by a route which has fewer craters and holes. Not sure if I can find such a route this year. In general, it's not safe to ride anywhere in town. Please use the dollars to fill the holes in the 2 feet next to the curb and forget about the painted (faded) lines. If I'm not swerving to avoid hazards, I won't get hit by cars.
5/2/2014 6:54:41 AM
Brutus02 says:
If they insist on implementing this hap hazard bike lane fiasco, they need to impose fines the idiots riding bikes on the sidewalk. Or will they wait till one of them gets killed.
5/1/2014 11:31:34 PM
nvjgu says:
59 years been here with no bike lane's. Who's idea was this.
5/1/2014 11:10:06 PM
Tachyion says:
As a bike rider I agree that Victoria is a poor choice for a bike lane. Many side streets are available to achieve the destination without using a main street. As to that disappearing lane....well, the traffic engineer, co-ordinator ( whatever the job designation ) related this to myself when questioned about the safety of the lane and lanes mentioned. We are not concerned about the merging ( simple logic dictates it is stupid ) He said " We do not want a queue of vehicles on Victoria heading West through the intersection at Balmoral if just a single lane were available on the East side....so we prefer to move traffic through the intersection. Of course when I, for the second time strongly stated it was not smart to funnel two lanes into one....especially since it's the left lane required to merge.....I was told emphatically that the queue of traffic at the intersection was more important. Traffic dept views vehicle movement as a priority over safety.
5/1/2014 10:39:13 PM
over60 says:
I would like to see Mayor Hobbs riding a bike down Oliver, passed the University right down to the lights, with Councillors driving cars in both lanes and doing so on both sides of the road and see how safe they feel, both on the bike and in the cars. Think before you paint bike lanes; there is no room for both cars and bikes on many of the roads and I think bike lanes are a good idea and an important part of any community.
5/1/2014 10:07:25 PM
Vanity says:
I am a cyclist and I will never understand why Victoria Ave when there is a bike trail two blocks north at runs parallel to Victoria.
5/1/2014 9:24:52 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
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nvjgu says:
Look at the pathetic road's. I have never seen such a mess here. You shure have to watch where your front tire is going if your riding a bike. I noticed nothing is being done about it year after year. Court St is a right off. I don't even ride that St anymore. I'm guessing it will be almost dirt by next year.
5/1/2014 8:38:03 PM
Cletus Van Damme says:
Like shooting fish in a barrel.
5/1/2014 8:06:17 PM
fuzzball says:
The bike lanes in TBay give the rider a false sense of safety. They should also be clean of sand and debris prior to opening them up. Have you ever tried to bike in sand? Very dangerous.
5/1/2014 7:18:26 PM
BetterThunderBay says:
Great to see the lanes officially open again! Hopefully we're not too far away from the spring sweep.
5/1/2014 5:32:48 PM
YellowSnow13 says:
As you can see by the poll on the right, 15% use them on a regular basis. That seems to be a lot of real estate for 15%. How about the rest of the people that don't use the bike lane. Maybe us drivers should get that space back. Maybe actual bike paths should be created instead of doing this. Ohhhhh ya! It doesn't make sense to make new paved areas for bikes when only 15% use it. City is a joke.
5/1/2014 5:00:22 PM
TBDR says:
I hope this comment was a joke...
5/2/2014 2:08:58 PM
codvx87 says:
Street sweepers are not wide enough, they brush the dirt onto the bike path. 1/2" of dirt + filled bike tires = head run over. If there's no one on the sidewalk I'll be on that. The trick is to not be an idiot, and to go sloow around corners and blind spots
5/1/2014 4:39:59 PM
Marak says:
I have NEVER once seen a cyclist on that "bike lane" on Victoria Avenue, yet I've seen about a dozen near accidents and almost been involved in one myself by people trying to merge when the lane inexplicably ends!!!

If we have to have bike lanes, can't we have real ones instead of dangerously impeding traffic with the ludicrous setups we have now?!???!!
5/1/2014 4:14:11 PM
TBDR says:
if they can't figure out how to navigate a road with a bike lane after two years of it being there, they're just bad drivers. Victoria Avenue was one of the first roads in town to have the lanes... the vast majority of the other roads with bike lanes are easy to navigate... both in my experience as a driver and cyclist.
5/1/2014 4:47:36 PM
hotdog says:
Agreed, Victoria Avenue=road rage. It is by far the most clunky and dangerous implementation of a bike lane to date and it should be removed. Bikers stay away for your own safety!
5/1/2014 5:39:48 PM
tsb says:
We must travel down different Victoria Avenues, as I see bikes in the bike lanes on that street fairly often.
5/1/2014 6:20:03 PM
Thesupermotohooligan says:
Never once? Drive through at 7:35-7:45am and you'll see me using it every Tues, Wed, Thurs morning!

Lets party! I mean ride!
5/1/2014 6:24:41 PM
Dan Dan says:
Bike lines are, in general, a good idea. In Thunder Bay, the implementation ranges from terrible to downright dangerous.

Areas like the intersection of Huron and Hudson are going to get people killed.
5/1/2014 4:11:47 PM
serena says:
Yes thank you for mentioning Huron and Hudson. You can't even see the lines now either.
5/1/2014 6:41:54 PM
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