Proposed Safety Improvements for Stanley Park Causeway Released - Your Feedback Requested

December 3, 2014

The Stanley Park Causeway, an important connection between Vancouver and the North Shore for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists alike, represents a balance between the safe and efficient movement of people and goods, access to recreation and tourism amenities, and the protection of our natural environment. 

It is estimated that over 400,000 two-way cycling trips are made through the Causeway annually; despite improvements to the bridge deck over a decade ago, increased volumes of people on foot and bike have raised the level of risk to all. In 2013, the death of a 61-year old cyclist due to a fall from the multi-use path into traffic prompted the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI) to prioritize the development of a plan to address safety concerns.

Following over a year of consultation with community partners and stakeholders that included the City of Vancouver, Vancouver Park Board, the BC Cycling Coalition and HUB, MOTI has released proposed improvements which, once approved by the Park Board, would be implemented as soon as spring 2015.

MOTI held a public information session to present proposed improvements to pedestrian and cycling paths along the Causeway on Dec. 2 at the Coal Harbour Community Centre - see the presentation materials here

Priority improvements submitted by HUB and included in the preferred design include:

  • Installation of a safety fence
  • Widening the bikeway
  • Adding better wayfinding signs

Based on the proposed designs from MOTI, we would still like to see two amendments for the final submission to Vancouver Park Board:

  • That the west path (southbound cycling-only) include more passing lanes to optimize cycling safety on this path - including the proposed third passing lane mid-way along the Causeway - due both to the natural slope and the increasing volumes of cyclists with varying experience and abilities travelling at different speeds; and
  • That the east path (multi-use cycling and pedestrian) provide some level of guidance to indicate where cyclists and pedestrians should go to allow for safe interaction of people at different speeds, while keeping a minimum safe path width for all users, out of recognition for the safety risks of combining two different modes along a busy active transportation route. 

We also note that proposed paths would be the minimum width for cycling - further widening would provide greater safety and accommodate anticipated growth of cycling and walking in the future.

Notwithstanding the above recommended amendments, and out of consideration for the benefits to be gained from expediting approval and implementation of the majority of the needed safety improvements, HUB is supportive of the proposal from MOTI.

We encourage you to review these plans, and send your feedback to project manager Erin Moxon by email or phone (604-527-3112), or directly to MOTI via their website before Dec. 9th.

You may also send your feedback and support to the Vancouver Park Board who need to approve the plan before MOTI can start construction.