Engineers considered many streets in Charlottetown before recommending Fitzroy Street be converted into a two-way bike lane.
Mark MacDonald, with CBCL Ltd., the firm commissioned by the City of Charlottetown to come up with a design for the proposed project, said Fitzroy Street made the most sense for a variety of reasons.
MacDonald gave a presentation on the proposed project during a public meeting hosted by city council on Tuesday night. Council has not made a decision yet on whether the project will go ahead.
MacDonald said Fitzroy Street provides a fairly direct route for cyclists between the Confederation Trail (where it comes off at Kensington Road) and Victoria Park.
He added that there are fewer intersection turning movements because it’s a one-way street, traffic volumes are typically lower and it is close to to major employers such as the Jean Canfield Building and the Atlantic Technology Centre.
Other factors that played into it are that there are no angled parking spaces on the street and it is already identified as a designated cycling route.
Kent, Euston, Grafton, Water, Sydney, Dorchester, King and Richmond streets were also evaluated as potential locations for the bike lane.
“Water Street doesn’t provide a direct route from the trail to the park,’’ MacDonald said, citing one location, “while Kent Street has higher volumes of traffic and angled parking spaces so we ended up with Fitzroy.’’
He added that Richmond, Sydney, Dorchester and King streets have lower volumes of one-way traffic but are generally quite narrow and would not provide sufficient space.
Just the facts
- The cost is estimated to be $1 million. Federal funding from the municipal strategic component of the gas tax fund will cover half of the cost.
- The Regional Active Transportation Plan in 2012 recommended more cycling infrastructure and enhanced connections between existing dedicated cycling infrastructure. A route across Hillsborough Bridge and connecting the Confederation Trail with the downtown were two of the recommendations.
- The city began to aggressively pursue connecting the trail with the downtown in 2015.
- Part of the bike lane plan is to create a bike path along Terry Fox Drive (by the provincial government buildings) that connects the two-way bike lane on Fitzroy Street with the bike lane around Victoria Park.