Recommendations to improve Wellington Center’s cycling infrastructure a good sign, advocate says


“It’s about fairness, trying to get other people to ride:” John Scott of Green Lanes

WELLINGTON CENTER – A recommendation to use the grants to improve Center Wellington’s active transportation infrastructure is welcomed by a cycling advocate.

A report to the Wellington Center Committee of the Whole recommends the approval of $ 300,000 from the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (PICI), for shared road signs on bike lanes, pavement markings, road widening and crosswalks.

This news is welcome to John Scott, an Elora resident who is part of the active urban design advocacy group Green Lanes.

Scott pushed for the township and council to invest more seriously in this type of infrastructure and said in a telephone interview that he was delighted to hear the recommendation.

“I’m really excited that they are installing crosswalks because we don’t really have any in our community and our drivers aren’t used to them,” Scott said.

He said he believed any improvement would encourage more participation from less experienced riders, as they are the ones who benefit the most from these improvements.

“For me, I don’t need any cycling infrastructure, I’m pretty comfortable on the roads,” Scott said. “It’s about fairness, of trying to get other people to ride.”

Scott also said he noticed an increase in the number of cyclists last summer and wanted to maintain the number of cyclists. In his view, more cyclists on the road will increase safety as drivers become more aware of their presence.

The township also seeks to promote cycle tourism, including kiosks and signage in this recommendation.

Scott sees the promotion of this type of tourism as a smart move.

“They call it ‘wallet on wheels’ … because there is a lot of money involved in this type of tourism,” Scott said, adding that there is a big advantage to parking downtown. .

“People with bicycles can park outside the city center, walk the loops and trails, and head into the city center.”

However, Scott said this plan is not perfect. He notes from his research that increased signage does not necessarily translate into safer roads for cyclists.

He also said he would like this to become a permanent part of the township budget rather than just using grants.

“They said it’s important, cycling infrastructure, but until it’s in the budget it’s not important enough for them,” Scott said.

Scott said COVID has underscored how important health is and that any investment is a good step towards an overall healthier community.

“People who had underlying health issues, many of which were lifestyle health issues, were and are really affected by COVID,” Scott said.

“So we should as a society try to do whatever we can to improve our health, physically and mentally. “

This recommendation will be discussed at a committee meeting on January 5 of the entire meeting.

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