A group of businesses opposed to a new separated bike lane on Commercial Drive are speaking out as the city prepares to hold community feedback sessions on the future of the street.
The city is holding open houses this week, and asking residents to weigh in on what would make Commercial Drive a ‘complete street.’
But the Commercial Drive Business Society says it’s now collected more than 5,000 signatures on a petition opposing construction of a permanent bike lane.
Speaking to Global News, cycling advocate Erin O’Melinn says she hasn’t given up hope yet.
“The city is going to hear more support as they go to consultation for people walking, biking, and taking transit. There’s over 80 per cent of the customers coming already by those sustainable modes and they want to do that more. So we need to widen sidewalks, we need to protect bike lanes and we need to provide better transit and more people will come.”
The Business Society says installing a permanent bike lane will limit the number of parking spaces and will drive away shoppers as a result.
O’Melinn says that’s just not the case.
“I think a lot of people actually do support it when they sit down and look at the principals, and what they’re trying to do with this project to make it a complete street. I think there is some misinformation out there.”
Open houses on the project will take place tomorrow and on again Saturday.