Canada’s Capital Region – The National Capital Commission (NCC), the City of Ottawa and Ville de Gatineau have agreed to combine efforts to improve cycling infrastructure and services throughout Ottawa, Gatineau and Canada’s Capital Region, with the key aim of improving the commuter cycling experience.
A special meeting of the Capital Region’s Tripartite Committee between the CEO of the NCC, Marie Lemay, Mayor Larry O’Brien of Ottawa and Mayor Marc Bureau of Gatineau was held today to follow-up on the participation of a delegation from the Capital Region at the world’s leading conference on cycling, the Velo-City Global 2010 Conference held in Copenhagen in June 2010. They discussed potential short, medium and long term cycling initiatives. In addition to the many planned cycling projects undertaken each year by the cities and the NCC, the following initiatives will take place this fall:
- The members of the Capital Region’s delegation who attended the Velo-City Global 2010 Conference and visited cities in Europe where cycling is a dominant mode of transportation, will share what they learned, including best practices for integrating cycling facilities into urban environments. Public presentations will take place at Maison du Citoyen in Gatineau on September 21 at 7 pm and at Ottawa City Hall on September 22 at 7 pm.
- One of the world’s leading planning experts on sustainable mobility and cycling in an urban setting, Mr. Jan Gehl of Gehl Architects – Urban Quality Consultants, will speak on October 6, 2010 in a public session about his experience transforming major world cities into cycling friendly and sustainable 0communities.
- In addition, Gehl Architects – Urban Quality Consultants will conduct a workshop, lead by the NCC in collaboration with both cities, to better understand the opportunities and challenges related to integrating cycling as a sustainable mode of transportation in the downtown core of Ottawa and Gatineau.
- The group also agreed that an integrated regional cycling map will be developed incorporating on-road cycling lanes, shared-use recreational pathways and other cycling facilities such as Bike-Share stations throughout the Capital Region.
Several other measures to make cycling safer will be considered by all three parties. For example, in order to make lanes more visible for cyclists, pedestrians and drivers alike, colored city and NCC bike-only lanes and/or intersections will be explored.
Finally, cycling will become a permanent item on the agenda of the Tripartite meeting and a forum will support the cities and the NCC as they move forward with these initiatives:
- The Inter-Agency Recreational Pathway Committee, an existing committee which brings together staff from the cities of Ottawa, Gatineau and the NCC, will meet four times a year to advance initiatives and share knowledge and expertise on cycling. Its mandate will broaden to include commuting and, once a year, this Committee will also invite cycling group representatives to their meetings to discuss cycling related issues.
“As we are embarking on the review of the Plan for Canada’s Capital, a blue-print for the Capital Region for the next 50 years, we know that sustainable mobility will be a key pillar,” said NCC CEO Marie Lemay. “The NCC wants to work together with the cities of Ottawa and Gatineau to define the place of cycling as a means of commuting within the Capital Region.”
“These are the kinds of initiatives that are possible when decision-makers take a longterm view of what\’s best for Ottawa,” said Mayor Larry O\’Brien. “I\’m pleased to once again be working with the National Capital Commission and Ville de Gatineau to deliver real results for our residents.”
“Gatineau is a green city and is working to develop infrastructures that will foster the use of alternative modes of transportation. By multiplying efforts to prioritize sustainable transportation, we contribute to reducing traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions, thereby making our environment even healthier. The involvement of the three partners in an approach to promote and develop a network of bicycle paths will guarantee our success in the area of sustainable mobility,” stated Marc Bureau, Mayor of Gatineau.
Participation in Velo-City Global 2010 Conference.In June 2010, a delegation from Canada’s Capital Region made up of representatives from the NCC, the City of Ottawa and the City of Gatineau attended the world’s largest global conference on cycling in Copenhagen, Denmark. The delegation also visited leading cycling cities in the Netherlands and Germany as part of a regional effort to learn from these world-class cycling cities. In each city, the NCC’s Chief Executive Officer, Marie Lemay, Gatineau Mayor Marc Bureau and Ottawa City Councillor Jacques Legendre met with cycling and sustainable transportation experts, city planners and cycling advocates to gather information for future planning for the Capital Region.
For information about the NCC’s cycling network, go to www.canadascapital.gc.ca/biking.
For information about the City of Ottawa cycling, go to www.ottawa.ca.
For information about the City of Gatineau cycling, go to www.gatineau.ca.
For information about the Velo-City Global 2010 in Copenhagen – Different Gears,
Same Destination, go to www.velo-city2010.com.