Vancouver Park Board set to vote on temporary Stanley Park bike lane

The Vancouver Park Board will soon decide whether the temporary bike lane in Stanley Park will return.

The route would give cyclists exclusive use of one of the two lanes on Stanley Park Drive. Motor vehicles and horse-drawn carriages would share the other lane.

Park board Commissioner Camil Dumont presented the motion last month, suggesting the bike lane be reinstated in the coming weeks, until at least October 31.

Meanwhile, one of Dumont’s colleagues says she’s hearing from residents who don’t want vehicle access reduced again this summer.

“I think everyone was just appalled, and hurt, and distressed by it,” says park board Commissioner Tricia Barker.

Barker feels the bike lane dismisses the concerns of people who rely on cars to experience Vancouver’s crown jewel.

“I’d like to think we’re a city where if someone with a disability, if they use a wheelchair and want to visit Stanley Park, we’d say, ‘How can we make it easier for you?’ And we seem to be saying, ‘Don’t go,’” Barker says.

Last week, a coalition of Stanley Park businesses spoke out against the temporary bike lane, saying fewer vehicles means less revenue, at a time when business is already down.

Jeff Leigh, chair of HUB Cycling’s Vancouver committee, says the temporary bike lane can be implemented in a way that doesn’t inconvenience merchants or motorists.

“It’s possible to have access to all areas of the park, disabled parking and all the rest of it, if done thoughtfully, intelligently, and with some planning. And I think that’s what the park board staff should be working on right now,” Leigh says.

The park board will vote on whether to bring back the bike lane on Monday night.