A proposal to add separated bike lanes to St. David Street N. in Fergus has risen to the top as Centre Wellington staff's preferred option for the busy corridor’s reconstruction.
The project will be back before councillors at Monday’s committee of the whole meeting where township staff are recommending council select the separated cycling lane option.
Following approval at a regular council meeting, the township will proceed with the project’s detailed design and apply for provincial funding. Centre Wellington hopes to break ground on the reconstruction in 2023.
In a report, township staff said the bike lane option is being recommended based on public consultation and because it promotes active transportation while balances the needs of vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians, enhancing the appearance of the streetscape, and keeping as many parking spots as possible.
“Adding cycling lanes on St. David Street North could be the catalyst for a larger plan to create an inclusive multi-modal transportation network within the St. David Street corridor, and connected to other on and off-road trail networks,” the report said.
Staff have also updated the conceptual design to include a designated “bike box” painted on the pavement at the intersection of Garafraxa and St. David Street N. The addition is aimed at improving safety.
Reducing vehicle lane widths and including curb “bump outs” and buffer areas is also expected to improve pedestrian crossings, the report said.
Earlier this year, the township polled residents on their preferred re-imagining of St. David Street.
The public was presented with four options through an online poll:
- Exact replacement to match the existing street was preferred by 41 per cent of the 750 respondents
- Remove on-street parking lanes and increase sidewalk/boulevard width, 10 percent preferred
- Maintain on-street parking from St. Andrew to St. Patrick Streets with sidewalk/boulevard widening, 25 per cent of respondents
- Separated cycling lanes, 15 per cent chose this option
Alison Sandstrom, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, GuelphToday.com