The City of Ottawa released its proposed budget for 2018 yesterday, and it includes money for a number of cycling projects.
I find it interesting that spending for cycling comes under the heading “active mobility”. Does this mean that spending for projects primarily aimed at motor vehicles should come under the heading “passive mobility”?
Another point of interest is that while the city is slating $7 million for cycling infrastructure in 2018, the mayor is highlighting the $80 million that will be spent on cycling and pedestrian structures, which includes substantial funding from other levels of government.
In addition to infrastructure projects, the city’s winter cycling network will be expanded with the addition of the O’Connor and Main Street cycling lanes.
The following is an excerpt from Mayor’s Jim Watson’s comments about the proposed budget. It provides a good indication where the city plans to spend on cycling in the coming year.
Budget 2018 also continues our Council’s strong support for active mobility.
In 2018, we will spend more than $7 million in cycling infrastructure through the Community Connectivity Program and through investments in paved shoulders.
I am pleased that Kanata North, represented by Councillor Marianne Wilkinson, will see improvements to Campeau Drive from, Teron Road North to Knudson Drive.
We will also be adding more than 15 km of cycling facilities across the city.
This will help us reach our goal of adding 72 km of cycling infrastructure to the City’s growing network by the end of 2018.
A few of the examples that will be funded in 2018 include:
● A pathway extension along the west side of Woodroffe Avenue connecting the existing pathways at Norice Street to Algonquin College, the College Square shopping Centre. (Ward 8)
● An upgraded cycling facility approximately 1km in length which will connect the City’s Sawmill Creek pathway to the NCC pathways along the Rideau Canal and Rideau River. (Ward 11)
● An improved neighborhood connection that allows Lowertown residents to reach New Edinburgh using the Minto Bridges. (Wards 12, 13)
● A new pathway linkage to inter-connect the existing Hydro Corridor terminating at Pony Park at Eagleson Road to the Ottawa-Carleton Pathway. (Ward 23)
● Improved linkages for cyclists around Confederation Line Stations, including a pathway from Albert Street to the lower level of Pimisi station. (Ward 14)
When combined with funding from other levels of government, the city’s total investment in cycling and pedestrian structures within this Term of Council will hit $80 million dollars.
This represents a 270% increase over the $27 million dollars spent on active mobility infrastructure in the last Term of Council.
This $80 million is in addition to the cycling facilities that are built as part of road renewal and new road construction programs.
One such example is the new Main Street cycle tracks, part of our complete streets plan.
In 2018, we will continue to improve the walkability of our city, with almost $3 million in funding towards various sidewalk improvement projects across the city.
This is in on top of the $1.5 million that will be spent to implement the Pedestrian Plan Program, which advances our goal of making Ottawa a world-class pedestrian city all year round.
I wish to thank the many Councillors, including Transportation Committee Chair Keith Egli and cycling advocates Catherine McKenney, Jeff Leiper, Mathieu Fleury, David Chernushenko and Tobi Nussbaum, for their support on this front.
I would also like to thank Yasir Naqvi, MPP for Ottawa Centre and Catherine McKenna, MP for Ottawa Centre, for their support of the new $21-million-dollar Clegg Street Bridge.
This new crossing in Councillor Chernushenko’s ward will provide pedestrian and cycling connections between Old Ottawa South, Lansdowne Park and Old Ottawa East.
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