Standing Policy Committee on Transportation and Transit will be debating public bike share system tomorrow, Jan. 25
Jan. 24, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Bike Calgary and the Bike Calgary Advocacy Committee are favourably disposed to the implementation of a public bike share (PBS) system in Calgary, provided that safe, functional and efficient Centre City bicycle infrastructure precedes the mobilization phase of the PBS system. "We support the recommendation to direct Administration to return by June 2012 with a business model and funding strategy for a PBS system with the understanding that staff or financial resources allocated to infrastructure, ongoing maintenance, and bicycle programs will not be diverted", says Bike Calgary president Brent Clark.
The cycling advocates believe that through approval and funding of the Cycling Strategy, Council demonstrated its commitment to providing Calgarians with better access to sustainable transportation options so that the 59% of Calgarians who want to cycle more often have the opportunity to do so. According to Bike Calgary, approval by the Standing Policy Committee (SPC) on Transportation and Transit to investigate the operation and funding of a PBS program is a step further in this direction and reinforces Council's commitment to increase bicycle mode-share. The organization also states that a PBS system in Calgary would be a great complement to Calgary's expanding public transportation network and a convenient way for Calgary's "interested but concerned" population (identified in the Cycling Strategy) to take up cycling.
However, Clark stresses that well planned and constructed bicycle infrastructure, accompanied by a comprehensive education and promotion campaign, is the foundation for a safe and successful PBS program. Clark says: "If limitations to financial or staff resources prevent such infrastructure and promotions from being in place prior to PBS mobilization, Bike Calgary recommends Council delay the PBS program until the conditions are right to ensure success."
Brent Clark, President Bike Calgary
Bike Calgary is Calgary's largest transportation cycling association with over 2000 members on its bikecalgary.org website. The Bike Calgary Advocacy Committee was formed as part of the Civic Camp engagement process, which successfully petitioned The City of Calgary Council to approve, and subsequently fund, the Calgary Cycling Strategy. It includes representatives from most of Calgary's cycling and active transportation organizations, including the Elbow Valley Cycle Club, the Bike Root Campus Bicycle Society of Calgary, the Good Life Community Bike Shop, Two Wheel View, and the Sustainable Alberta Association/Commuter Challenge.