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Calgary Bike Lanes and Bike Paths

BrandedBlue

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East Village/4 St SE Cycle Track plans and construction timelines are posted on the City website. Planned completion of November 2019


I have mixed feelings about this plan. From a safety/accessibility standpoint it's nice to avoid crossing the LRT tracks, but the jog at 7 Ave is going to be annoying for regular bike commuters.
 

Surrealplaces

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I wonder how many cyclist will choose to go straight down 4th street instead? Agree about the jog at 7th. I have cycled from 9th ave to the river a few times, and have never had any issue going down 4th street.The one time there was a train I took the jog at 7th, but other than that going down 4th is easy enough.

East Village/4 St SE Cycle Track plans and construction timelines are posted on the City website. Planned completion of November 2019


I have mixed feelings about this plan. From a safety/accessibility standpoint it's nice to avoid crossing the LRT tracks, but the jog at 7 Ave is going to be annoying for regular bike commuters.
 

outoftheice

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This plan is ridiculous. The jog is a nuisance and they are relying on a shared sidewalk for it which will increase conflicts between bikes and pedestrians. It also ignores the fact that a major destination for the area will be the new grocery store at 4 St and 6th Ave. This plan moves the route one block east and across the tracks from the place a lot of area residents will trying to get to all because "it was decided that constructing the cycle track along 4 Street S.E., through the intersection of 7 Ave. S.E. where the LRT crosses, could create potential safety issues for less-experienced cyclists".

Also on a side note, weren't the 9th Ave cycle lanes supposed to be turned into cycle tracks as part of this East Village project?
 

Cowtown

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Sort of bike lane related.. has anyone heard rumours that Lime Bike is halting the bike operation? Apparently you can’t get them through the app anymore. Only scooters.
 

BrandedBlue

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Sort of bike lane related.. has anyone heard rumours that Lime Bike is halting the bike operation? Apparently you can’t get them through the app anymore. Only scooters.
There are still bike showing up on the app but they are greatly outnumbered by scooters now. I know they were phasing out the bikes in favour of scooters in other cities.. I'd be sad to see the bikes go as I use them at least a few times a month.
 

Zoom

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I saw some discussion on Reddit about this. They aren't dropping their bike operation, but at one time they had all their bikes listed as being under maintenance. Don't know if it's a glitch, or what, but the bikes are back again. Someone did mention they are scaling back on the number of bikes, and adding more scooters.
 

Mountain Man

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Anyone else having issues cycling on 11St in the afternoon rush hour? 13 days in a row I've nearly been hit by a car because the driver wasn't paying attention. On Wednesday the guy looked right at me then turned and drove right at me, and despite all that I don't think he ever even saw me. I've messaged Councillor Woolley, called 311, emailed the transportation department, and it's only getting worse. I'm open to ideas here...
 

Mountain Man

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There are still bike showing up on the app but they are greatly outnumbered by scooters now. I know they were phasing out the bikes in favour of scooters in other cities.. I'd be sad to see the bikes go as I use them at least a few times a month.
I hate the scooters, they should cancel that instead.
 

Surrealplaces

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They're going to need a another set of tracks for scooters the way things are going. lol

I don't mind the scooters themselves, but there's the issues is people not knowing how to use them yet. Already in a couple of weeks I've ran into two people on scooters because they made a sudden turn without looking. I think they were trying to stop and forgot how.
 

darwink

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Either e-scooters will become even more prolific, or they will disappear world wide. Right now the projected cost of each ride is double what they are charging users, and the difference is being fuelled by venture capital. Either someone invents a scooter that is much cheaper, or much more durable, or both, or the industry dies.
 

Mountain Man

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The issue I have is there is no predictability with these scooters, people use them on the sidewalks, the bike lane and on the road. Riders are always trying to slalom which is annoying when you're trying to get by them, and if you get a few people side by side on them, then all common sense and logic go right out the window. There are too many people who just don't seem to know what they are doing and are wobbling all over the place. Biggest concern I have regards how fast they are on the sidewalks, people are ripping down at 25km/h and just ride right into the crosswalk without giving drivers enough time to see them and slow down, seen too many close calls already. In addition to that, people leave them all over the place, right in the middle of the sidewalk, bike lane and pathways. I'm really not a fan, and somebody is going to get killed riding one before long if this keeps up.
 

darwink

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People get killed walking, biking, and driving. It is a bit callous, but I am not concerned with the potential for scooter deaths. They are inevitable.
 

zagox

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The issue I have is there is no predictability with these scooters, people use them on the sidewalks, the bike lane and on the road. Riders are always trying to slalom which is annoying when you're trying to get by them, and if you get a few people side by side on them, then all common sense and logic go right out the window. There are too many people who just don't seem to know what they are doing and are wobbling all over the place. Biggest concern I have regards how fast they are on the sidewalks, people are ripping down at 25km/h and just ride right into the crosswalk without giving drivers enough time to see them and slow down, seen too many close calls already. In addition to that, people leave them all over the place, right in the middle of the sidewalk, bike lane and pathways. I'm really not a fan, and somebody is going to get killed riding one before long if this keeps up.
I think there is the potential for significant positives from scooter and e-bike share in Calgary. Our pathway system has great potential as a tourist attraction, but visitors don't have enough easy and fun options to access it. There are also a lot of neighborhoods just beyond comfortable walking distance from downtown (e.g. West Hillhurst, southern Inglewood, Lower Mt Royal, Elbow Park) that have good pathway access but no LRT -- scooter and e-bike share will attract some people that can't/won't/don't bike or bus commute.

The challenge is how to make these new options available without making the city significantly less safe (recognizing that as has been pointed out, walking/driving/biking have risks too, but we don't want this new mode to make public spaces noticeably worse). I think some combination of education and enforcement, funded by taxes and fines on scooter users, will be necessary, at least until local customs / etiquette / peer pressure take over.

The issues I have seen are
1) people riding 2+ to a scooter,
2) people riding drunk,
3) people riding who have no idea how to use them; and
4) people riding too fast especially on crowded sidewalks.

I bet in 10 years time there will be many more social norms over what's OK and what isn't, but to get there, the police are going to have to step up and enforce some rules to prevent the most egregious bad behavior.

PS - I would note that Calgary police/fire seem to spend huge resources zooming up and down the Bow on jet boats enforcing rafting rules and saving idiots each summer, but we seem to have a shared understanding that it is a fun thing to do and a good tourist attraction despite the risks. I suspect that the police enjoy their Baywatch:Alberta summer cruises and are happy to devote resources to that activity. If patrolling the sidewalks chasing drunk college kids on scooters can be made as fun for CPS as jet boating, I suspect they will be out in force next year.
 
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darwink

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Scooters are not a uniquely Calgary thing. Most visitors will be from from cities that similarly have scooters by a function of numbers.
 

CBBarnett

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The electrification craze is finally here with the scooters. They are easy to use, no effort, fun, cheap (compared to most other modes) and door-to-door: a combo of factors that no other form of transportation can offer in our city. I agree with @zagox; it will take time to work out the kinks, build norms and have people adjust to these new technologies. I debate whether the sidewalk is the right place for them - sometimes it makes sense, other times they are too fast for congested sidewalks - they have added more evidence to prove how woefully narrow our main street sidewalks are.

I suspect this is just the beginning. In less than a month since they arrived, shared scooters are averaging 8,000 - 12,000 riders per day and we haven't even seen the other models and formats out there yet in other cities (beefier models, ones with seats and cargo capacity etc.) We should be all waking up to the material shift in our transportation mix, particularly the inner city but elsewhere too. Hills no longer matter as much, neither does traffic if you can comfortably keep up with most of it regardless of your personal fitness level. Remember it's not just the shared ones to think about, for-purchase models are common in other cities and will be showing up here now that people have a taste for it.

All this is pointing to cars having to give up much more of their space in the inner city at first, but eventually elsewhere. The sidewalks are too congested already, let alone when a couple hundred scooters show up and the inner city continues to add population. Even if they are parked properly - not a guarantee of course - they are taking up too much room. Street corrals should be added all over to fit them but taking out street parking. Bicycle / scooter lanes should follow on almost every street, protected lanes where possible, including in the burbs.

Injuries and inconveniences are inevitable, especially as we build a different transportation culture from nothing. But by car standards, scooter costs are a drop in the bucket compared to the damage cars do to people's lives, health and finances. One day - maybe sooner than we think - I expect you'll seen a walking, bicycle and public transit back-bone form (more than it already is in the inner city) combined with shared e-scooters,e-bikes and car share taking over the whole system. Over time fewer and fewer private vehicles except for delivery and trades vehicles.
 
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