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No cash for cycling safety improvements at 29 Ottawa intersections

The city paid a consultant to come up with preliminary designs for 29 of the intersections identified, but so far has only freed up about $800,000, about half of the cost to redo one intersection.
2019-08-30 bike lane laurier avenue
Laurier Avenue's westbound bike lane, across from City Hall, was modified to try to improve cyclist safety in 2019. OttawaMatters.com file photo

The City of Ottawa has identified the most dangerous intersections for cyclists in the capital, but doesn't have the money to fix them up.

It reviewed the most dangerous intersections after multiple fatal collisions involving cyclists and approved a new road safety plan to reduce death and injuries on its roads in 2019.

The city then paid a consultant to come up with preliminary designs for 29 of the intersections identified, but so far has only freed up $800,000, or about half of the cost, to redo the intersection on Smyth Road by the Riverside campus of The Ottawa Hospital.

"We need council to take action, to make sure these intersections are safe," Erinn Cunningham of Bike Ottawa told's the city's transportation committee, Wednesday. "And that does mean funding."

Upgrading all 29 intersections to improve cycling safety would cost around $32 million; an amount that Cunningham argues is not a lot, when taken into context.

"By my count, that's about a quarter of what we'll pay, for example, to widen Strandherd Road, or a small fraction of the cost to widen some of the other roads in our city," said Cunningham.

Some of the most dangerous intersections are completely or partially on NCC lands, so the mayor and a couple of councillors on the transportation committee have written a letter to the NCC, asking it to help the city improve safety at those intersections.




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Jason White

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Jason is an award-winning reporter on 1310 NEWS.
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