Great piece from the David Suzuki Foundation that admonishes the apocalyptic tone that some media outlets have been taking when talking about adding bike lanes to Bloor (absolute chaos! cats and dogs living together!) and reiterating that in just about every case, a street with a bike lane makes that street better.
The new bike lane will be a boon to local businesses when complete. Research shows people arriving by bike spend more money than those arriving by automobile. In fact, researchers at Portland State University discovered that customers who cycle spend 24 per cent more per month than those who are car-based, possibly because lower fuel and maintenance costs free up money for other things. The New York City Department of Transport found that, following creation of a protected bike lane on Ninth Avenue, local businesses enjoyed up to a 49 per cent increase in retail sales. It’s not surprising that during debates on the Bloor lanes, more than 70 business owners voiced support for the project.
For businesses opposed to bike lanes, I’d like to ask them to come up with a marketing initiative (that incurs no cost to them) that would increase their retail business 49% like bike lanes have in NYC. It’s just not possible.
What do you think: Now that the Bloor bike lanes are being installed, and people are starting to use them, is the world as we know it collapsing? What metrics do YOU think will indicate success of this bike lane pilot?
Leave your comments below.