January 15, 2016 - 9:00 PM
KELOWNA - There’s going to be a lot more cycling and walking in Kelowna’s future.
City council on Monday will see some of the details on the pedestrian and bicycle master plan, the stated goal of which is to increase walking and cycling so that within 20 years, 25 per cent of all trips less than five kilometres in length will be made on foot or two wheels.
As well, the plan calls for a 50 per cent reduction in collisions between bikes, people and cars within the same time frame, according to the report by transportation manager Moudud Hasan.
The city right now has 400 km of sidewalks, 297 km of bike lanes and 40 km of multi-use pathways.
As of 2013, combined walking and cycling trips account for just over 11 per cent of daily trips, although that increases when looking only at the downtown core where such trips make up 13 per cent of the daily total.
According to IBCC, from 60 to 70 pedestrian collisions and 60 to 80 bike collisions with vehicles are reported each year in Kelowna, which plays into the fears some people have about cycling.
An online survey conducted as part of the master plan identified a lack of safe bike lanes as a significant barrier while would-be walkers cite time and distance as stumbling blocks.
Future priorities include adding 87 km of sidewalks, 40 km of cycle tracks for bikes and another 210 km of on-road marked bike lanes.
Cost is also a barrier as the price tag for delivering the priority projects is $267 million. The city currently invests $800,000 a year in bike lanes and sidewalks, a rate that would only amount to $90 million by 2030.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016