UPDATED: Aldergrove bike lane work halted over parking

The parking versus bikes issue has come to Aldergrove.

A fight over on-street parking is threatening a new bike lane on Aldergrove’s 32nd Avenue.

Cycling advocates and a resident argued for or against the painting of the line before council on July 11.

Residents have raised concerns that there was not enough consultation before one side of on-street parking was to be removed to make way for two bike lanes.

The council voted to hit pause on the project until after public meetings with residents. Councillor Kim Richter moved the motion.

Councillor Bob Long raised concerns that the eastern end of the lane won’t have much to meet up with until Abbotsford finishes bike lanes and paved shoulders on its side of the municipal boundary.

The meetings have not yet been scheduled.

The bike lane down 32nd Avenue has been part of the Township’s plan for some years, said Paul Cordeiro, the manager of transportation engineering.

Bike lanes for both sides of the road would get cyclists from 264th Street to 276th, where they could connect with more bike lanes in Aldergrove and into Abbotsford.

“It’s a big deal for Aldergrove,” said Heath MacKenzie, a cyclist and owner of Cranky’s Bike Shop.

Right now the bike lanes on Fraser Highway end at 264th Street.

“There’s no connector at all,” MacKenzie noted.

Riding down Fraser east of 264th was not terribly safe, he noted.

“You’re dodging traffic, and you’re dodging those sewer grates,” said MacKenzie.

As a parent of 10- and eight-year-old boys who ride in the neighbourhood, MacKenzie said he’d feel better about them riding in a bike lane.

However, some neighbours raised concerns about the loss of parking on one side of the street, said Cordeiro.

The Township did parking surveys before work started and found that street parking use was “actually quite low,” Cordeiro said.

As of now, the work of removing the centre line has stopped. None of the bike lane paint has been put down.

The plan was to paint the bike lanes and adjust the centre line over the summer, once school was out, Cordeiro said.

 

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