Letter writers suggest they aren’t likely to use bike lanes. (Black Press file photo)

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Nanaimo’s hills aren’t cycle-friendly

City should consider practicality of bike commutes, says letter writer

To the editor,

Re: Bike lanes inexpensive compared with roads, Letters, March 3.

Well, what an incredible statement. To think that a bike lane approximately 20 per cent the width of a road and designed to carry perhaps five per cent of the load is less expensive. The writer quoted some interesting if meaningless statistics regarding the cost to society of buses, cyclists and drivers. Meaningless because I have to wonder how a bus with a completely unknown number of passengers can be compared to a single cyclist or the driver of anything from a compact car to a 36-wheel truck. Far more to the point might be to compare the typical usage of bike lanes with the amount of traffic on roads. Despite the fact that Nanaimo has built or squeezed in several bike lanes over the past few years, I see very few cyclists actually using them. Of course that could change as electric bikes become more popular but at their current price I won’t be holding my breath.

Perhaps a question should be asked before more bike lanes are built: Just how practical is a bike-commuting society in the hilly environs of our city? Those towns and cities that enjoy a burgeoning cycling community are relatively flat and cycling is easy even in bad weather. Not so here. Bike lanes might be considered as the thing to do for forward-looking municipalities but we should remember that the shoe has to fit if we are to wear it.

Garry Bradford, Nanaimo

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Bike lanes necessary for safety

To the editor,

Re: Bike lanes inexpensive compared with roads, Letters, March 3.

Council and staff must all start riding to work every day to prove this is a sustainable method of transportation.

They sink tax dollars into bike lanes that by and large are not used. If those who preach don’t practise what they preach, they should go another direction.

Incorporate bike lanes into all-new subdivisions and roads to maybe get children to indulge in this fantastical vision. If their parents let them out of sight.

Irene Spivey, Nanaimo

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