More BikeBC Funding Needed
The GVCC is disappointed that the recent 2017 BikeBC grants did not include funding for any projects in the Capital Regional District (CRD). At least two municipalities submitted applications for BikeBC funding in 2017: the City of Victoria for the Fort St protected bike lane and the District of Saanich for the McKenzie bike lane between Cedar Hill Rd and Shelbourne St.
“Both of these projects meet BikeBC’s standards of high quality bike lanes that will encourage more people to ride. The lack of support shows just how underfunded bike infrastructure is in BC,” says Edward Pullman, President of the GVCC. “We need the next provincial government to step up and commit to at least doubling the yearly BikeBC grant.”
Last year BikeBC funded four projects in the CRD: Pandora Ave protected bike lane, Lansdowne bike lanes in Saanich, closing the E&N Rail Trail gap through Esquimalt & Songhees Nations and Dunford bike lanes in Langford.
In 2016, BikeBC distributed $6.5 million in grants for cycling projects to communities across BC. In 2017, that amount increased to $9 million.
“The amount of money coming from the provincial government to support cycling infrastructure is miniscule compared to the billions being spent on motor vehicle infrastructure,” stated Pullman. “Each region rarely receives funding in consecutive years, leaving local governments with limited ability to expand their bikeway network and improve active transportation options for their residents.”