Bike Proponents Stopped Short By Council

A long line of bikes await riders on King Street in Toronto, on 20 December 2016. Bike Share Toronto, operated by Metrolinx, allows riders to pick up a bike at one station and ride to a second.Photo by Ian Shalapata.

A long line of bikes await riders on King Street in Toronto, on 20 December 2016. Bike Share Toronto, operated by Metrolinx, allows riders to pick up a bike at one station and ride to a second.
Photo by Ian Shalapata.

(WINDSOR, ON) – The executive director of Bike Windsor Essex is not happy with the delays being encountered with Windsor Council regarding a bike sharing program for the city. Council, last night, voted to look at the program in a piecemeal fashion instead of using an integrated approach.

Lori Newton was hoping that Council approved a $70,000 feasibility study, business plan, station location assessment, and a marketing analysis. Instead, councilors approved just the feasibility portion of the overall plan, thus extending the process indefinitely.

“We are going to be behind because we are not willing to dive in and roll our sleeves up and get something exciting done for our city,” Newton told media. “It’s the Windsor story.”

A localized bike share program operates at the University of Windsor.

Council is seeking a report on how the program is run in Hamilton and if it could be replicated in Windsor. In the meantime, the city risks losing out on federal and provincial funding.

Windsor Council, as a whole, is not familiar with cycling and has consistently refused to consider the infrastructure needs of bike riders. Inefficient bike lanes dot the city and there was no provision for including bikes during the reconstruction of Ouellette Avenue. There is also the over 10-year delay to create a safe biking route through the Central Box corridor.

The consensus among the bike riding public is that a small feasibility study is designed to fail and will be used to justify stopping the program altogether.

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Ian Shalapata
Ian writes for and provides imagery to Square Media Group as well as accepting freelance photographic assignments. In addition, he has contributed to media organizations, sporting groups, and individuals across North America including the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, Chatham-Kent Sports Network, the Golf Association of Michigan, League 1 Ontario, as well as numerous colleges and universities in Canada and the United States. Email Ian Shalapata