Uptown Protected Bike Lanes – June 12 deadline

June 12 is the last day to submit comments on the ‘new’ street plan for King Street, Waterloo. Make sure the city recognizes that we’re asking for protected bike lanes, not deathrows or painted gutters!

To be sure the city / regional team’s preference is against protected bike lanes (refer to Appendix D: Evaluation of Final Alternatives).

Make you voice heard!

Let’s build the community we want to live in for the next 20 years. Your voice is important! (Check out TriTAG’s bike uptown slide deck asking where you’d rather bike.)

New option – May 29 2013 (via City of Waterloo pdf)


Comments need to be sent by June 12th to:

King Street Streetscape Improvement Project (City of Waterloo)
Barb Magee Turner (City of Waterloo)
P. 519.747.8757  E. barb.mageeturner@waterloo.ca

King Street North Reconstruction
Eric Saunderson (Regional Municipality of Waterloo)
P. 519-575-4746   E. esaunderson@regionofwaterloo.ca

Love new designs

I absolutely love the new designs, it’s true protected cycling at its core, but these need to be the preferred designs. If this is approved by City and Regional councils, it will absolutely change the culture of our uptown experience and set precedent for future cycling infrastructure improvements in our region and in our province.


One concern I have is that this plan is only for the King Street section north of Erb Street. South of Erb Street, which is about 100m to the tracks does not have any planned bicycle lanes. I’m worried that the lack of bicycle infrastructure south of Erb implies a lack of planned bicycle infrastructure along the LRT corridor south on King as well.  I will be following up with the streetscape team on these concerns.

Another is I want to see a plan to measure the effectiveness of the streetscape improvements. What is the increase/decrease on revenue for businesses? What is the increase/decrease in motor vehicle traffic? Bicycle traffic? Pedestrian traffic? Large Vehicle traffic? What is the impact on our quality of life (neighbourhood desirability for live, work and play)?

The other area that comes to mind is the plan for snow removal on the planned improvements? I’m not an expert but I didn’t see areas in the plan that could be used for on streetscape storage. The implication is that snow has to be completely removed for the entire surface.

Lastly I have not heard where the Uptown BIA stands on these improvements. I just sent an email today to Patti Brooks Executive Director for the BIA (patti.brooks@waterloo.ca) asking if the BIA has a formal position. I’m sure the BIA will have a big say in the preferred option that goes to the councils for vote.

A few pictures from our visit to public consultation on May 29th. A bunch of us met at Kitchener City hall and rode up through the proposed changes in Waterloo on our way to Waterloo City hall. Riding in the group of 10 or so cyclists really gave a feeling of increased safety.




A few folks rode in their sunday best. Below is the shoe winner of our impromptu fashion contest.IMG_20140529_181330




Afterwards we hit Uptown for dinner. We had take-out from Tacofarm as our kids were famished needed the freedom that comes with backyard eating. You’ll notice my 7-seater bicycle below which is my mini-van killer, its a story for another post (babboe+chariot).

8 thoughts on “Uptown Protected Bike Lanes – June 12 deadline

  1. To be clear, I thought the preferred design was still the November proposal?

    The handout at the public consultation centre has a paragraph that says that the old proposal is marginally better economically and comparable for safety. At the back of the handout they have an appendix that ranks the designs qualitatively and quantitatively, and it summarizes by saying that the old proposal is better. (The deciding factor was the addition of a “maintains on-street parking” metric.)

  2. OK in this article (last page) it states they are waiting on public feedback before deciding on a new preferred design
    ‘As a result, the project team has prepared a new King St. N. option between Erb St. and University Ave. that would address these concerns. The team is presenting this new option to the public for feedback before making a final decision on the preferred plan’

  3. Glad I’m not insane!

    My reading was they preferred the November option but public support could shift them to the May proposal.

    See also page 5 of that PDF where they say that it has the edge for economic and transportation reasons. It may–but I think they understated the safety aspects (they view both alternatives as equivalent for cycling safety).

    It felt a bit sneaky and subtle, TBH. Why have a meeting to say, effectively, “1000 people asked us for something different. So here it is, but it’s worse”? And if you’re going to have such a meeting, why not loudly and clearly say that the proposal is worse rather than burying it in an 18-page document?

  4. Colin, thanks so much for correcting my understanding. When I attended the public consult I had my kids with me so I wasn’t really paying attention to the details as much as I should have. Now to fire off a bunch of emails to see where this decision is going.

    I’ve updated the post, changing the context of the new designs.


  5. While the plan is an improvement, I would love to just close down King St for cars. That would create an awesome European-style pedestrian space.

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