According to TheRecord.com, Kitchener city councillors have given approval in principle to a new cycling master plan. That isn’t too much news itself, considering that Windsor has a Bicycle Use Master Plan that is 9 years old. However, what is exciting about their new master plan is that it includes changes to intersections to give cyclists priority, as well as installing 8km of bike lanes which will be physically separated from traffic. Currently in Windsor, we don’t have any separated bike lanes, and only approximately 25km of bike lanes in total.
A significant amount of the bicycle network proposed for Kitchener is made up of “bicycle priority streets”, or bicycle boulevards. These streets will give cyclists right of way at intersections (turn 4 way stops into 2 way stops for example), but will have traffic calming measures installed so that traffic does not divert to these streets. Examples of traffic calming measures used are half-road closures, speed humps, or traffic circles. Ajax also recently committed to a master plan that incorporates bicycle priority streets. Maybe some day we will see bicycle priority streets in Windsor – but probably not until we have an updated master plan.