Coalition formed by Edmontonians pushing for more bike lanes
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If you enjoy getting around Edmonton on two wheels or just want to see more bikes on city streets, a new coalition wants to hear from you.
As city administration and council get ready for upcoming budget discussions, a group of avid cyclists, business owners, health care professionals and those who just want a more bikeable city are also coming together to prove just how valuable more protected bike lanes would be.
"There's this grid of high quality bike routes for downtown and near the university areas that city council has approved but there's no funding to build it. Cycling is a growing form of transportation in Edmonton [...] and so we're asking for a modest proportion of the upcoming budget," said Conrad Nobert, co-founder of the Edmonton Bike Coalition.
Their demands? That city council dedicate around $7 million each year, for the next four years to develop safe bike infrastructure.
The first part of the coalition's ask would see developed bike infrastructure for 102 Avenue and 83 Avenue, the preferred bike routes of Edmontonians as per recent city information. Protected bike infrastructure in the city will also be part of the group's ask when they present themselves to council during budget discussions.
The city currently has a four-year plan for bike routes in the city, but coalition members want to see city council put the money where their mouth is.
"We want to make it public that we want this small fraction of the capital budget and the returns in investment for bike infrastructure are really big," said Nobert. "We just want to mobilize the large amount of support that is out there. People can support something and not even realize there's this very important capital budget vote coming up so we want city council to know that people who ride bikes in Edmonton care about this grid of bike routes and want it built."
The coalition group will have more information and a website up later this week, according to Nobert.