Lane width on Lilac is a problem

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Gord McGonigal

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Aug 3, 2010, 6:36:37 PM8/3/10
to River Heights-Corydon-Osborne
I regularly travel down Lilac (between Corydon and Grosvenor) and
often see cyclists riding too close to the parked cars. This is
because they do not feel comfortable riding in the traffic lane, so
they stick to the right side of the line that separates the parked
cars from the traffic lane.

Therefore, it would be great for cycling safety and comfort if the
traffic lane could be narrowed to make the parking lane wider, and
hence allow more space for cyclists to avoid the door prize.

I measured the traffic lane as 11 feet wide in one direction, and 12
feet wide in the other. What would be the minimum lane width for a
street like Lilac? 10 feet?

Streetview:
http://www.google.com/lochp?q=lilac,+winnipeg&ie=UTF8&hq=lilac,&hnear=Winnipeg,+Division+No.+11,+Manitoba,+Canada&ll=49.870585,-97.157965&spn=0.041323,0.056992&z=14&layer=c&cbll=49.870731,-97.158079&panoid=BgJmxGqLrWARKqj9AhbnLA&cbp=12,333.84,,0,32.24

Anders Swanson

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Aug 9, 2010, 10:07:50 AM8/9/10
to rh...@googlegroups.com
Gord,

I agree.  One thing: narrowing travel lanes on Lilac might be tricky - unless you are specifically trying to reduce the amount of (motorized) vehicles using it. According the second edition of the Technical Handbook of Bikeway Design, published by VeloQuebec, pg.36,  the "recommended lane width for local/collector streets >2000 vehicles per day is 3.3m. The recommended width goes down to 3m if less than 2000 per day. I imagine Lilac gets over 2000 vehicles per day, and it is a key exit from the neighbourhood.  note: (11ft. = 3.3m) 

However, given that there are such short north-south blocks, few Lilac addresses and ample parking on the cross streets (except maybe on Jessie/Wardlaw during bar hours!), I wonder if converting the existing parking into bike lanes might be a better solution?  

I would suggest 2 things that regular folks like us could do to help: 

1. Bike to the Future and One Green City can ask that Lilac be added as a proposed route on the AT network. Regionally, it is significant. People headed south to Corydon Village / earl Grey from points north and west of the Maryland/Sherbrook use Lilac because of the good connection from Wellington and the fact it heads directly toward the Pembina/Jubilee area. Until curb cuts are installed at Wentworth and Grant, (working on it), it is also the quietest way (in this neighbourhood) to cross Grant. 

2. Find a local champion. Somehow start getting a feel for how people with Lilac addresses feel about parking vs. calmer traffic / safe place to ride a bike. My uncle happens to live on Lilac. He once cycled across the country. I'll bring it up in conversation. 

Cheers,
Anders



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