Public Forum on City’s Proposed Bike Path through Kits Park and Hadden Park
Boathouse (Kitsilano) – between the palm trees
12 noon, Sunday, October 20, 2013
Just two weeks ago, on October 7, the Vancouver Park Board approved the construction of this bike path. CityHallWatch covered the original story here, with maps, documents, images, and key facts. The Voony blog “The bike lane vs the park” has an excellent analysis, including detailed review of the City’s public survey used as a basis for this plan. The Vanramblings blog also has an extensive review (Park Board: Paving Paradise to Construct an Asphalt Bike Path) of the total context. Here is Bruce Allen’s reality check on CKNW:
With its e-mail notice of the upcoming public forum, KPRA provide a wealth of information from the local perspective, which we summarize below. KPRA stresses that the group is not opposed to cycling, access, or improved safety, and agrees with the desirability of having a designated cycling route through the neighbourhood. Their concerns are about the design of the path, not the goals or intent.
KPRA states that they received no pre-notice of the meeting and have a number of concerns with the design and process.
- Destroys a lot of Green Space The intrusive path is 3.5 metres wide. You can see this in the attached articles, but better yet, go down to the parks and see the lime outline.
- Raises Safety Issues A designated cycling route through our neighbourhood is desirable for safety reasons but this route cuts through the parking lot and the picnic area dangerously close children’s playground Rick Hansen donated, raising new safety issues for pedestrians.
- Destroys 10 Memorial Benches
- Provides No Options How about painting a bike lane from Ogden to Arbutus and the lane to the Boathouse, reducing the path’s width, positioning it alongside the sidewalk—we’d like to hear your suggestions.
- Shows Poor Due Process There was limited stakeholder engagement, no advertisement, no consultation, no public signage and no public meetings as required for such a major construction project. The survey was skewed and doesn’t reflect public opinion on this design. It appears only cyclists knew about the meeting. There’s an unparalleled rush to construction…. and to make matters worse, Aron Jaser, VP of the Park Board, has said it’s not going back to the drawing board.
- Gathers Significant Opposition A number of large organizations representing some 10,000 members are overwhelmingly opposed to this $2.2. million plan that cuts off 54,000 sq ft of park space. The Executive Director of the cycling association is concerned.
The route cuts through the hedge by the totem pole, adds pavement to Hadden Park, which is already pretty narrow. It follows the pedestrian path down the hill to the end of the trees, cuts across the picnic area to the parking lot, bisecting the parking lot and removing a number of parking spots. It then cuts across the parking-lot entrance and cuts off the park corner at McNicoll & Arbutus. It follows Arbutus to Creelman, cutting across the pedestrian access to the playground from the street. Then it cuts through the park behind the Boathouse, across the path between the Boathouse and tennis courts and bisects the triangular section of park beside the parking lot. It crosses the pedestrian path to Yew, then follows that path to Cornwall. It turns down Balsam but needs to cut through the park at an angle, crossing 2 more pedestrian paths.
- KPRA calls on the City to respect Kits Point Residents’ knowledge and attachment to the parks and help residents understand why they are fast-tracking this destructive plan.
- KPRA is calling on citizens to attend the public forum, send feeback (l.kent [at] telus.net) and talk to neighbours and friends about this in exploration of better alternatives.
A poster is also being circulated, thought is is not clear to CityHallWatch at this time if it is from KPRA or another group. SAVE KITS BEACH Poster, event 20-Oct-2013b