Bike Task Force submits recommendations to Smithers Town Council

Smithers Town Council received recommendations from the Bike Friendly Task Force last week.

Council received the long-awaited recommendations from the Bike Friendly Task Force last week as council prepares to conduct a pilot project for a cyclists corridor on Third Ave.

After several meetings the task force concluded Third Ave. served as the best possible solution to creating a cross town corridor that will be safe enough for cyclists of all ages.

Councillor Phil Biernesse felt the recommendations were moving in the right direction to ensure the town makes improvements that won’t break the bank.

“The recommendations the task force came up with are really strong,” Biernesse said.

“They’re all reasonable and doable, things we can achieve which I think is very important.”

Bike task force member, Ellen Hansen, said the committee recommended Third Ave. for the pilot project because they looked at all other routes and concluded Third Ave. has the best access with the least amount of impact to congestion and businesses in the community.

“We looked at all types of traffic, having connecting corridors but also how viable it would be to use that corridor, Hansen said.

“Third Ave. doesn’t have a whole lot of businesses compared to others areas.”

“Third Ave. seemed to us to be more doable than other corridors to make the space and not interfere with other with other uses.”

After the meeting Biernesse noted the ultimate goal for the recommendations is to have more people biking rather than driving cars in the community, which hopefully creates a deeper sense of community, he said.

“The key is a pilot project,” Biernesse said.

“See how it works and how the community receives it, if it makes a difference in the number of people biking.”

“What we’re trying to do is increase the total number of people biking in our community.”

“In order to do that we need to go the extra step and provide them with a safe place to be.”

Council will discuss the recommendations and move forward with the pilot project at their next council meeting in November.