Riding on a transit overpass

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    My ride to and from work takes me across the overpass that crosses Crowchild at the University LRT station. Based on the City of Calgary Pathways and Bikeways map this entire overpass including the ramps is designated as part of a Regional Pathway. My understanding of the bylaws is that this means I am allowed to ride my bike across it, obviously following the shared pathway rules and etiquette.

    On the ride home tonight I encountered a pair of Peace Officers at the base of the ramp on the east side of the overpass who told me that I need to dismount my bike and walk across the overpass. I told them that I thought the City had designated the crossover as a multi-use pathway, but they simply said I couldn’t ride on a transit structure.

    They didn’t try to ticket me and it was a civil exchange so I didn’t press the issue, but am I incorrect in my interpretation of the pathway bylaws? I don’t really want to have walk my bike across the overpass everyday or change my route to avoid it, but I also don’t want to risk getting a ticket.

    I’m going to contact 311 tomorrow to try to get some clarification, but I thought someone here might have encountered a similar situation and have some input. Thanks!


    Hmmmmm ….. That doesn’t seem right to me either. Especially since there are a lot of MUP’s that just connect “naturally” to those. By proper design!! On the other hand, they are not expressly noted in the bylaw.

    So here’s something I saw that didn’t feel right as well. I saw 2 guys rip across one of the C-Train platforms on e-scooters at full speed. These platforms could be considered a “natural” extension of the sidewalk, right? So that would be OK?

    Maybe there are some bylaw changes coming up soon …..


    I forgot to post this. I like the new freedom to only have to yield when going from the MUP to the road!!!



    One hopes the new yield regime will be a prelude to a full idaho stop law once it can be shown that the sky hasn’t fallen….


    OK, so here’s the plan. Get Edmonton to adopt it first, then it’s a no-brainer, we just have to wait. They got a new hockey arena and a Jollibees before we did, it just took a few years or a coupla’ months for Calgary to follow.


    Oh I missed this post.

    So there actually was an issue a while back regarding that very same overpass, and transit overpasses in general regarding bicycles. It was on Twitter, so I might have to do some digging, but maybe the same user will show up and post it again or tell their story.

    The long and short of it is a sign randomly showed up declaring for bicycles to dismount at the transit overpass. “No Bikes” or something like that. There was pushback because it is labelled as a regional pathway, and many university goers used it as their commute route. This particular post was from a professor, I believe?
    Anyway the result was that a ward Councillor stepped in and had it clarified. As a regional bicycle route. The sign was removed.
    I believe this was Druh. She might be a good first stop in someone to ask.

    So, I believe there is simply some red tape here because of Calgary Transit. Two different parties are trying to make rules for something and it’s getting confused or jumbled. Especially for the Peace bylaw officers who are just trying to do their job.

    Shortly after all this I was looking at that route myself and was curious. Then I took the route a few times so I could get video of it.
    It’s an important connection to be sure. But I hated riding it. It absolutely is not good bike infrastructure and I can see why they wouldn’t want people riding it, especially while busy or with a wave of train goers just getting off. It was fun to do the route once to see it but I absolutely avoid it for my regular route. Dunno what I’d do about it if the University was my destination though. 311 would hate me 🙂

    My recommendation?
    Put in some 311 tickets for a new overpass bridge. For example there are two bridges at Dalhousie Station. If Dalhousie has two, why shouldn’t the heavier use University have two? Preferably a better design than the dalhousie small one though. And with a better ramp than what they have at the uni now.


    Thanks for the detailed info!

    As a follow up, I was in touch with a Transit Officer through 311 and a staffer from Druh Farrell’s office. Long story short, there are currently two conflicting bylaws. The transit bylaw (4M81 MBL) states that biking on transit structures (i.e. the overpass) is not allowed, while the pathway bylaw (11M2019) states that biking on the overpass is okay.

    The final answer that I got from Councillor Farrell’s office after they consulted with Transit was that they are in the process of amending the existing bylaws to allow cycling on the transit bridges. For the time being they are not actively enforcing the current no-biking bylaw, so fines should not be a problem provided people are not biking recklessly.


    The transit authority were just puffing their chest out, thats what they like to do as cushy union job members. They dont know any better. But I agree to cooperate with them, stroke their ego’s and things usually turn out well.

    I have often wondered about the train platforms downtown, how is a person suppose to know its a train station vs sidewalk, aside from the obvious of course. Its a free fare zone so no need to post signs or install gates.

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