In April, 2016, cycling advocates called on the province to invest $200 million in cycling infrastructure over 4 years.
We were happy to report in June 2016 that the province of Ontario announced it’s much-anticipated Climate Change Action Plan, including several “actions that support cycling“, as well as other strategies that “will put Ontario on track to reduce transportation-related emissions while also helping to reduce the fuel costs of moving people“.
The province is now interested in members of the public reviewing and commenting on the province’s proposed plan to implement actions identified in the Cycling Initiatives under the Climate Change Action Plan.
The Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is proposing actions to accelerate and enhance implementation of #CycleON: Ontario’s Cycling Strategy by improving commuter cycling networks in Ontario. Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP) identifies an intended investment of $150–225 million from cap and trade proceeds to support the creation of better cycling networks, more cycling facilities in urban areas, and more bike parking at transit stations and provincially owned, publicly accessible facilities.
As part of implementing the province’s CCAP commitments, MTO is proposing a program that includes the following components:
- Local Cycling Infrastructure – The province would help municipalities build cycling infrastructure that improves safety in urban areas and supports commuter cycling between residential communities, major transit stations, employment areas and other destinations travelled to on a frequent basis. Eligible infrastructure would include on- and off-road cycling facilities such as painted bike lanes, paved shoulders, cycling lanes separated by a curb, off-road multi-use paths and associated infrastructure (e.g., cycling signals, signs).
- Provincial Cycling Infrastructure – The province would fund initiatives that will address provincial barriers (such as highways and bridges) that impact local cycling networks. Additionally, the government would make direct investments in provincial highways in urban areas to create the conditions to increase cycling for commuting and other frequent trips, where safe and feasible to do so. Infrastructure funded under this component could include on- and off-road cycling facilities (e.g., painted bike lanes, paved shoulders, cycling lanes separated by a curb, off-road multi-use paths), active transportation bridges and associated infrastructure (e.g., cycling signals, signs).
- Bicycle Parking – The province would support construction of bike racks, bike shelters, bike lockers and bike enclosures at government-owned, publicly accessible facilities, transit stations and potentially private facilities such as workplaces and condominiums, where cycling for commuting and other frequent trips is reasonable. Constructing bike storage facilities at destinations can make it easier for people to choose active transportation for day-to-day trips. Having bike parking at transit stations can make it possible for people to bike to and from transit, allowing them to leave cars at home and add physical activity to commutes.
54 per cent of Ontario residents say they want to cycle more than they currently do and, of these, 42 per cent would consider cycling more to work or school. Many day-to-day trips currently made by passenger cars could be made by bike. One third of Ontarians have a daily, one way commute of less than five kilometers – a distance that an average adult can cycle in 30 minutes or less – so increasing and supporting cycling can help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and manage congestion. In addition, there is a growing opportunity for Ontarians to cycle instead of drive from home or work to public transit, as well as to other destinations travelled to on a frequent basis.
Please review the Notice and send your feedback before November 30, 2016 to be considered as part of the decision-making process by the Ministry.