If you’d like to get more involved, we’re working on providing constructive comments to the City’s traffic engineers this Winter, especially before the Budget is presented. We can be reached on Facebook, or Twitter if you don’t find a response by our membership form or email.
You can submit a delegation to the City Clerk by mid Thursday this week, then appear before City Council on Monday after 5:30pm if you’d like to support cycling plans laid out in the Transportation Master Plan (TMP). Bike Regina has long been consulted during the years-long formation of the TMP. As we’ve noted in previous communication with the City of Regina, more needs to be done now to build safe cycling infrastructure for the people of Regina. Council implementing the TMP could be a step toward that construction.
While the Saskatchewan Medical Association (SMA) is calling for the province to implement a mandatory bike helmet law, Bike Regina states that such a law could do more to reduce cyclist safety than help it.
“It is not something we support outright. We support helmets if people feel they need them,” said Luke Nichols, vice-president of communications for Bike Regina. “Research shows that helmet laws don’t increase safety. They can actually reduce the safety of cyclists.”
According to the SMA, 700 young people are hospitalized in Canada each year from bike-related injuries. A total of 20 die and 50 are disabled. Currently, Saskatchewan and Quebec have no provincial law for bike helmets. Cities can also implement their own helmet bylaw, something Regina has not done to this point.
A New England Journal of Medicine study found that riders with helmets reduced the risk of head injuries by 85 per cent. Conversely, an article published in the New York Times reported that the rate of bicycle head injuries, while less severe, had increased 51 per cent from 1991 to 2001, a timeframe in which bike helmets were mandatory. In the same timeframe, bike use was actually decreasing. One reason for this comes down to the drivers of vehicles.
“Studies have shown that when people wear bike helmets, cars pass closer to them, rather than leave them extra space,” Nichols said.
A University of Bath study showed that when overtaking cyclists, drivers gave helmeted cyclists much less space than those without helmets. On average, drivers passed helmeted cyclists 8.5 centimetres closer than non-helmeted cyclists.
Read the rest, at the Leader-Post.
We’d like you to know about what our friends at Wascana Freewheelers are doing too.
We are a recreational club. We like biking, eating, camping, common
adventures, new people.
Coming in May:
Wednesday Night Rides (from legislature, 1 – 1&1/2 hours, ends with coffee or ice cream. All rides have leaders and “sweeps” so no one is ever alone at the back. Great for learning to ride with group.
Weekend Rides – progressive supper, Lumsden for brunch, Kronau for ice cream, Spoke-n-Spa around Moose Jaw, Gone with the Wind ride, camping tours, self-supported tour along highway 22 in Alberta
Education – CanBike Safe Urban Cycling (18 hours) in May, for anyone who rides on streets
– Adult learn to ride (1/2 day, for
adults who’ve never ridden a bike) in June
– Learn to Tour (carry all camping/gear
on bike) through out June (club has starter gear)
“I offered to equip city council with bikes for the summer, to be returned on Aug. 31,” Vandelinden said.
So far, only Coun. Andrew Stevens has contacted him back about the challenge.
Stevens currently spends most of his time biking or riding transit to commute, and is up for the challenge and hopes others take it on as well.
Read More at Leader-Post:
When it comes to cycling accessibility and options, Regina is one of the worst cities in the Prairie provinces, according to Luke Nichols with Bike Regina.
“I would rate Regina as poor,” Nichols said. “Since the official community plan was passed about three or four years ago, we have implemented one block of cycling infrastructure. That is it. That is the extent of what the city has done.”
Compared to other Prairie cities, Regina seems to lag behind. Saskatoon has an extensive cycling network in development and has implemented protected bike lanes for cyclists in the city. Calgary currently has more than 550 kilometres of pathways and 260 kilometres of on-street bicycle routes.
“Broken down, we have a multi-use pathway system that is 41 kilometres, and it extends throughout the city,” said Geoff Brown, manager of infrastructure planning branch. “As well, we have 21 kilometres of bike lanes.”
Nichols contends that with more bike lanes, more residents would start cycling through the city, creating greater use and need for bike lanes.
“The official community plan found 65 per cent of people were looking to cycle but were scared due to lack of infrastructure,” Nichols said.
Read the rest, at The Leader-Post.
January 19, 2017, Multipurpose Room Riddell Centre, University of Regina @ 2:30pm
Hosted by Western Cycle, and Bike Regina
Our Annual General Meeting this year is at the Creative City Centre on Hamilton St. (next to The Capitol), 7-9pm, January 23rd.
We hope to see you there!
- Cities that develop a strong cycling strategy see escalating ridership and economic, social and environmental benefits. In detail, what does Regina need and what are you ready to support to develop a municipal cycling strategy?
I would agree that a complete athletics or sports strategy developed by Cities adds to the benefits stated in your question. If we look at the type and level of migration coming to our Cities and specifically to Regina we are seeing other sports putting a demand on our playing fields like cricket and soccer to name a few. I can’t comment on what Regina’s needs regarding cycling until I have all of the facts and metrics. However, Regina has a vast park and trail system that goes through the City that is the envy of many Cities. A cycling strategy has to encompass safety and timing. Cycling is a short season so a strategy for outdoor use during the best weather is imperative.
- The federal government has already committed to developing a 10-year infrastructure investment plan that will include significant new funding in green infrastructure to create sustainable and livable communities. Knowing the link between infrastructure and ridership, what would do to hasten the construction of local networks of protected bicycle infrastructure?
The City has current networks within the City however the City could have these discussion with the Developers of new subdivisions etc. It’s a ‘pay as you play’ system, in other words clubs, teams and sports associations pay to use sports facilities, upgrades and to sustain it over the long term. I would ask who would pay for the bicycle infrastructure and the sustainability of it over the long term? We can’t always expect that Government will always pay for these things and there must be some type of shared costs. I would welcome a discussion how this would look like. For example the new football field at Douglas Park is funded by Private money, fundraising, the Regina Minor Football association and some City funds. These are the type of relationships we have to look at in the future.
- Where did you last ride a bicycle, and what do you love most about it?
Growing up I had a 1 speed red bike and grew up on a hill, a very, very steep hill. It provided a fitness advantage to me because I had to ride up that hill, many times walked my bike up that hill (especially after soccer practice), but the training at a young age made me stronger and gave me an advantage over other kids. I rode my bike everywhere and eventually got a 10 speed when I was 13. I was able to play competitive soccer and played Football at the University of Western Ontario because of my speed and core strength which I attribute to riding my bike at an early age (for about 10 years) and building the appropriate muscles.
I have a mountain bike and usually take it out once per year, but I don’t have the time anymore and envy those that still have the time to ride.