City unveils extensive new bicycle network

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The Plante administration is set to add 26 kilometres of new bike lanes over the next two years, as part of a long-promised plan to make life easier for cyclists.

The lanes added in the next two years will be along five major axes in the core of the city — Lajeunesse/St. Denis/Berri Sts., Viger/St. Antoine/St. Jacques Sts., Peel St., Bellechasse St. and Souligny Ave. — and will eventually connect to one another in what the city is calling the Express Bicycle Network, or REV (Reseau Express Vélo).

Mayor Valerie Plante promised an extensive city-wide bike network during the 2017 election campaign. Its goal, she says, is to make cycling safer, and to get more people using bicycles for their regular commutes.

More space for bikes, however, will mean less space for cars — and that people will have to get used to seeing some major arteries being rearranged.

"Ultimately if we want to have more people using their bikes, if we want to have less people in their cars in the city, well ultimately we need to do the changes that are necessary," Plante said. "We always have in mind this cohabitation, how do we coexist together?"

In the years to come, the city hopes to have the network contain 184 kilometres of bike paths from one end of the island of Montreal to the other.