$25 Million Announcement made at Ontario Bike Summit
By Claire McFarlane
Glen Murray, minister of transportation and infrastructure, announced on Monday, April 13, that Ontario will be investing a total of $25 million into cycling infrastructure over the next three years.
The announcement was made at the Ontario Bike Summit where Murray was a keynote speaker along with City Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, who is also the current Public Works chair.
Eleanor McMahon, founder and CEO of the Share the Road Cycling Coalition, said that she was very pleased by the news of the investment since it was something her and the organization had been hoping for, for a long time.
Murray (below) said that he is, “Determined to make this the cycling capital of the world,” as he spoke about how the province will now integrate cyclists into the planning of all future roadways. He also mentioned #CycleON’s Action Plan 1.0 which describes goals and actions to be taken by provincial government in order to made Ontario more bike-friendly.
This 6th annual Ontario Bike Summit is being hosted at the Hyatt Regency on King and had the theme “I bike. I vote.” Apropos of the upcoming provincial and municipal elections. The theme was chosen to reflect the opportunity we have as cyclists to advocate for better infrastructure and community support to cycling in the lead up to the elections.
Toronto citizens are expecting rapid expansion of the bike plan following the upcoming municipal election and now, following this announcement of new cash. In particular, protected bike lanes are being planned for the Richmond/Adelaide corridor and are expected to materialize this summer. Perhaps with this new funding, Torontonians can more confidently imaging at least one major East/West and one North/South route materialize as a protected bikeway or cycle track.
The event also featured workshops on everything from cycling tourism to promoting cycling for youth to community advocacy and innovations in infrastructure.
The Bike Summit continues on Tuesday, April 14, with discussions on how Bike Share is revolutionizing cycling and cycling as a "brand." A link to the full agenda can be seen here.
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