Green bike lanes and bike box coming to Gordon Street

Pilot aims to improve safety for all travelers

Update, July 12, 2017—Bike lane painting along the southbound lanes of Gordon Street is complete. Painting of the bike box has been delayed and will likely be completed overnight Thursday, July 13, weather permitting.

Guelph, Ont., July 11, 2017—The City of Guelph is testing and evaluating changes to bike lanes on Gordon Street to reduce the number of collisions between people driving, walking and biking in this area. Changes, which include painting only, will be made overnight tonight.

“We developed this pilot project to help address the high number of reported collisions involving people driving, walking and biking on Gordon Street between Waterloo Avenue and Wellington Street,” said Jennifer Juste, the City’s Transportation Demand Management Program Manager. “Bike lanes that are painted green are more visible and improve road safety for everyone, not just people biking.”

The following changes are being made:

  • Bike lane being painted green on the southbound lane of Gordon Street through the intersection at Waterloo Avenue;
  • Bike lane being painted green through on the southbound lane of Gordon Street from the intersection at Surrey Street to just north of Wellington Street and;
  • Bike box being added at the intersection of Gordon Street and Waterloo Avenue/Wilson Street.

The illustration shows a road intersection. The traffic signal is red. One person on a bike waits in the front left of a bike box painted green on the roadway, and another person on a bike is turning right from the bike lane. There are bicycle symbols painted inside the bike box and there are car symbols painted before the bike box with the words Wait Here. A car waits in the right lane behind the bike box.Bike boxes improve road safety for everyone by making them more people cycling more visible to people driving when they are waiting to make left-hand turns.

The bike lane pavement markings in the southbound and northbound directions of Gordon Street between Waterloo Avenue and Wellington Street will be painted thicker (20 cm) to increase the visibility of the bike lanes to people driving this route.

These changes make bicycle lanes and people using them more visible, signaling all road users to use extra caution at intersections and driveways, and reminding turning vehicles to slow down and watch for other road users, including people who are walking and biking.

“There are a number of factors that make this stretch of road prone to more conflicts than other areas,” noted Juste. “These include a higher number of business driveways and streets over a short distance, bicycles travelling down the hill at speeds similar to cars, more signs and a lot of people turning in and out of driveways. Together, these factors make this stretch of road very busy visually, and drivers may not see people walking or biking as they try to wave turning vehicles through.”

City looking for community feedback

The City wants feedback from all road users (people who walk, bike, take buses or drive) and local businesses and employees. Feedback will be used to determine whether the changes improve road users’ experiences along Gordon Street. Opportunities to share feedback and experiences with the green bike lanes and the bike box will be available on the City’s website starting tomorrow. These opportunities for comment will also be promoted on the City’s Facebook (facebook.com/cityofguelph) and Twitter (twitter.com/cityofguelph) channels.

More information about how to use bike boxes for people biking and driving can be found under Cycling facilities at guelph.ca/bike.

More information about the pilot project can be found online at guelph.ca/construction under Gordon Street Pilot Project: Green Bike Lanes.

Facts

There were 300 collisions on Gordon Street between Waterloo Avenue and Wellington Street from  January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2016:

  • 207 (69 per cent) of the collisions led to an injury
  • 35 (11.6 per cent) of the collisions involved people cycling, an average of six per year
    • 22 (63 per cent) of the collisions involving people cycling happened while the cyclist was following the rules of the road
    • three (eight per cent) of the collisions involving people cycling happened when the cyclist failed to yield the right-of-way
  • nine (three per cent) of the collisions involved people walking, an average of 1.5 per year
  • 198 (66 per cent) of the collisions happened during turns into and out of businesses and roads

Images of existing roadway

Photograph taken from the east side of Gordon Street, looking toward the intersection at Waterloo. Cars are stopped waiting at a red light. A bike is stopped in the northbound bike lane of Gordon Street at Waterloo Avenue Looking north up Gordon Street to Waterloo Avenue from just south of Surrey Street. Cars are traveling down Gordon Street. The Church of Our Lady can be seen in the background. Photo taken from Gordon Street at Surrey Street looking south to Wellington Avenue. A bike ride down the southbound bike lane and a car waits to turn right onto Gordon Street form Surrey Street. A photo looking south down Gordon Street toward Wellington Street, from just north of Surrey Street. A car waiting to exit Surrey Street from the west blocks both the southbound bike lane and right vehicle lane on Gordon Street.

Media contact

Staff will be on site at Gordon Street and Waterloo Avenue/Wellington Street on the morning of Wednesday, July 12 to talk about the pilot project with people driving, cycling and walking. Media are invited to attend this introduction to speak to staff and take pictures of the changes.

Jennifer Juste, Program Manager, Transportation Demand Management
Transportation Services, Engineering and Capital Infrastructure Services
519-822-1260 extension 2791
jennifer.juste@guelph.ca