Cycling showdown: Windsor council to discuss Wyandotte bike lanes – Windsor

A cycling showdown is expected at Windsor city hall tonight.

Bicycle advocates will appear before council, in hopes of reversing an earlier decision that denied adding bike lanes to Wyandotte Street East. Instead, city staff and a committee favour a route that zigzags down to South National Street.

The decision drew criticism from Coun. Chris Holt who said it ignored the positive contributions cyclists can make to an area, and Bike Windsor Essex Executive Director Lori Newton.

Lori Newton

Lori Newton is the executive director of Bike Windsor Essex, an advocacy group. (Derek Spalding/CBC)

“To have an opportunity to spend money on our roads and then to ignore the cycling community is irresponsible and not looking at the future,” she said after the vote.

BIAs support more bike lanes

The cycling groups started a petition calling for bike lanes on the street and have the support of two business improvement associations in the area.

“I’m hoping that it will get referred back to administration so that all parties can get involved and they can look at what other cities are doing and see if we come can come up with a solution for not just Wyandotte,” explained Bridget Scheuerman, executive director for the Pillette Village and Riverside BIAs.

Bridget Scheuerman

Bridget Scheuerman, executive director for the Pillette Village and Riverside BIAs. (Jonathan Pinto/CBC)

“Right now, the emphasis is on Wyandotte, but what we want to do is we want to have the city look at whenever they’re doing any kind of road work, let’s make it safe,” she added. “Let’s make it so that it’s bicycle friendly, it’s motorist friendly, and it’s pedestrian friendly.”

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Scheuerman said reducing vehicular traffic to one lane in each direction would slow down cars and keep pedestrians in the area safer.

City officials have argued Wyandotte Street is meant to be a major artery, and point out the long term plan calls for bike lanes to go on Riverside Drive, as part of the Vista project.