Last year, I scoped out the existing conditions where a new bikeway was due to be installed along Point Grey Rd and Cornwall Ave in Vancouver. The decision to put this is in was not without controversy, and post-installation, the arguments for and against are still continuing, with the main municipal opposition party promising to take the greenway out if they win a majority on the next city council.
With the greenway being somewhat less than two weeks old, it was a good opportunity to check it out. These photos were taken while travelling in the eastbound direction, whereas last year’s post was in the opposite sequence.
The seaside trail is a mixed use gravel trail that goes all the way to Spanish Banks, and ends at the hill on NW Marine Dr that leads up to the UBC Campus.
For you Michiganders out there, think really good chip seal with a great view of the beach and mountains.
Going back to Alma and heading east, here is the first of several islands that indicate the direction of flow of traffic. I didn’t keep track of which way you were supposed to drive along Pt. Grey, but it seemed to me that the direction reversed at least once, and that local residents were still able to drive in both directions in some sections. There were certainly places where there were cars parked pointed in both directions.
Just past this section, we are routed through a parking lot!
Perhaps the sections along Cornwall were the hardest to resolve to the satisfaction of all parties, but I don’t think that the current solutions are optimal.
On balance, the Greenway does do what it was intended. In conjunction with the extensive revisions at the south end of the Burrard St. bridge, there is now a safe, mostly protected bike route all the way from downtown to Kits and the beaches further west. It certainly seems to be attracting more families and tourists on bikes out this way.
It also certainly benefits the very fortunate residents of Pt. Grey Rd since it must be much easier for them to back their cars out from their driveways with the absence of traffic. I expect that those like Nelson Skalbania, David Suzuki and Chip Wilson will see their property values shoot up even further.
One hopes that there will be similar benefits from the West Toronto Railpath Extension, although the feel of that project is considerably grittier.
Update: someone made a very pretty video of the bikeway
Update2: a followup article from the Globe and Mail.