Cars in Stanley Park

Divided roads returning to Stanley Park

The Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation has passed a motion to bring back a temporary bike lane on Park Drive which encircles Stanley Park this year.

In April 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, the Park Board closed all roadways in Stanley Park to vehicular traffic so that cyclists could use the roads freely to give pedestrians walking the seawall more room to practice physical distancing.

While the roads in the park have since fully re-opened to passenger vehicles last September, the Park Board has announced they are temporarily restoring the bike lane on Park Drive, which winds through Vancouver’s 405 hectare crown jewel. This would divide the two lane road divided in half, with one lane each for cars and bicycles.

The temporary lane restrictions would come into place “as soon as possible” and last until October 2021, according to Global News.

The Park Board had conducted a survey in which some 11,000 responses were received. In the survey, 66% of participants wanted more roads allocated for cyclists, while 57% wanted days where no cars could access the park.

Opponents to the limitation of vehicles in the park include those who have mobility issues and rely on a car or minivan to get into the park, as well as the many businesses that count on customers that drive who may otherwise not visit.

The City of Vancouver is making these changes as part of its ongoing climate initiative to curb emissions from transportation by encouraging use of public transit, cycling, and walking.

Sources: Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, Global News

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