One of BFC’s mandates is to advocate for safe, accessible and inclusive cycling infrastructure across Prince Edward Island. We are calling on the BFC community to help voice our urgent concerns about the proposed plans at the new St. Peter’s-Belvedere roundabout.
What’s the issue? Constructing a roundabout at this intersection has been in the works for nearly a decade. When plans were released earlier this month, BFC was disappointed to see that the current designs do not offer adequate and safe infrastructure for active transportation. In the current intersection design, 4 of the 5 roads approaching the roundabout include only painted bicycle lanes, and all of the bicycle lanes end abruptly at the roundabout approach. There do not appear to be ramped curbs at any of these points for cyclists to exit the roadway, dismount and proceed through the roundabout as a pedestrian. The only option cyclists have is to merge into heavy traffic on a narrow curve where drivers’ attention will be on traffic in the roundabout, rather than on cyclist movement. This puts even the most experienced cyclists in a very unsafe position. To build such a critical and long-lasting piece of infrastructure without any acknowledgement of the needs of pedestrians, cyclists, people using mobility devices, and the many other community members that benefit from active transportation, is exclusionary and in opposition to the city’s own stated goals “to create a culture of active transportation” and “to improve barrier- free accessibility to active transportation networks”. This intersection is extremely central and will affect how traffic flows in this growing part of town for decades to come. Rather than trying to change it after it is built, the time is now to integrate safe, accessible passage for bikes and pedestrians through this major intersection. How can you help? We want the city of Charlottetown to revisit the proposed plans for the St. Peter’s-Belvedere roundabout and to find a solution that offers adequate and safe infrastructure for active transportation. They won’t need to start from scratch—Bike Friendly Communities has assessed the designs and will be sharing our suggestions with city councillors and the Public Works department for small, simple changes to the current plans that will greatly improve the safety and accessibility of this intersection for all users.
Here’s where you come in: to make sure our elected officials understand just how important it is that these designs are revisited before construction begins in July, we are asking our community members to write to your city councillor and let them know that you want to prioritize safe, accessible and equitable access to active transportation infrastructure. We have prepared a sample email that you are welcome to use, but we also encourage you to include your own ideas, experiences and concerns.
Not sure who your councillor is? Use the city’s map to figure out which ward you live in and then find your councillor and their contact information. Don’t live in Charlottetown? You can still make your voice heard by writing to the chair of the Public Works standing committee: Councillor Terry MacLeod (email@example.com) and Mayor Phillip Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Let’s do this! 🚴 📝