Never say PT isn’t open to a range of points of view.  Here’s one by David* – who argues for #stanleyparkforall.  That is, keep the bikes on the seawall (crowding is only evidence of its popularity) and keep both lanes for cars (because of seniors, disabled, business, etc.).

Gotta say, it’s a well-done video.

So, what’s wrong with sharing the road with one lane for each?  David’s response: “we don’t know how it could impact traffic flow or emergency vehicle access”.  Reverse what you did, Parks Board, go back to the way it was – before March 2020 ever happened – and have a conversation.  A long conversation.

Well, David, now we will know how one lane each impacts traffic flow.  And my guess is, after seeing the results so far and by the end of summer, you’ll have to come up with another well-done video.

 

*Tell is more about yourself, and, while you’re at it, what you think those ‘improvements’ to the seawall would be to accommodate the (yes, literally) hundreds of thousands of bike trips being made on Park Drive as a result of the current configuration.

 

 

 

Comments

  1. So many manipulations and downright mistruths in this video.

    So let’s turn this around. If more motor vehicle traffic, more space for cars and more parking is a good thing, then let’s propose widening Park Drive and other roads to 3 or more lanes. Let’s propose expanding the parking lots.

    Then let’s see what the public has to say.

    So if more isn’t better, who defines what enough is? And why isn’t access for all, as it is today, not good enough for some people? What are they really looking for?

    1. Have cycled ,walk and driven through Stanley park for over 60 years. Bicycles don’t belong on sea wall it’s not wide enough for inexperience cyclist and walkers. I found I enjoyed cycling on the road was more enjoyable not dodging people and more room. Many a time when visiting Stanley Park during the week and times when not busy there was lots of room for everyone (cars etc)

    2. Have cycled ,walk and driven through Stanley park for over 60 years. Bicycles don’t belong on sea wall it’s not wide enough for inexperience cyclist and walkers. I found I enjoyed cycling on the road was more enjoyable not dodging people and more room. Many a time when visiting Stanley Park during the week and times when not busy there was lots of room for everyone (cars etc)

    3. Not more, Ron, just as it was before. The park was carefully designed and much was spent on the various modes, so let’s keep it that way and then look into considering options for change. No one is suggesting turning the road into some kind of super highway. There is no black and white “more is better”, it’s about making sure everyone can enjoy the park.

      Otherwise, wondering what the “downright mistruths” are in the movie. It’s certainly not my intention to mislead or manipulate.

      1. That tin can robot keeps repeating itself. You may not recognize it as your intention but you mislead just the same.

          1. Of course you just wanted another hit on your video which I didn’t want to give you. Your manipulation never ends – including that. So here goes:

            Your footage of the roads show them to be empty. I have yet to see them not busy with cyclists and often crowded. Clearly you made extra effort to find times with single cyclists.

            You claim the roads will remain closed for many weeks while they study the plan. A lie.

            How is opening a lane to motor vehicles hurting restaurants and attractions “even more”?

            How can we know how traffic flow and emergency access be impacted without the one lane trial?

            If less parking is bad, as you claim, then more parking must be good. It is hard to believe that the amount pre covid was exactly just right. If it had been less to begin with few would be in favour of more parking and many would be outraged. Yet, at some point, more parking had to have been built. If it’s not okay now it wasn’t okay then and I’ll bet many people were equally upset as would be now.

            You make a point about the cost of these changes but ignore the cost and environmental damage that would come with seawall improvements.

            Nobody is shutting out people who need to arrive by car as you claim. Another lie.

            I wasn’t making things up when I said your video was full of manipulations and mistruths. Calling you out for simply repeating them is fair comment. I’m glad you enjoyed the chat.

        1. Wow, fella, you got a serious attitude problem. Not sure there is any point in engaging with someone who is so clearly bent on being so pissed, but for the record, I will respond to your points.

          You claim I contrived to go at some ungodly time when no one was around. I went on Monday May 11th and the footage was taken around 2pm. I had no particular reason to go that day except that it was nice and I had no particular interest or reason to contrive how busy it was or wasn’t. I know it’s been busier other days, but that was the day I happened to go. I also went again the other day, also on a Monday, and it happened to be busier and I said so in social media posts about that visit.

          I didn’t claim the road would be closed for “many weeks”, that was publicly stated by park board staff Dave Hutch, “I want to ensure the board that we are talking weeks in terms of the timeline to get vehicle access into the park”. I was quoting him and I said so in the film with quote marks and the words “park board staff” under the quote. Clearly that was not the case and I don’t know why, but the film was based on the prevailing facts.

          While the roads would be closed for “weeks” people who need to access by car would not be able to. I don’t see how you can dispute that or claim it as a lie. If the road is closed, cars cannot enter.

          Your other points are questions, which I am not going to bother responding to, given your attitude. A civil discussion where you make opposing points would be fine, but baseless accusations of lying is really uncalled for.

          1. None of that changes the fact that the video is misleading and full of mistruths. Why don’t you address that instead of explaining why it is okay to be misleading and include statement that are not true?

            Your reputation precedes you. Otherwise there would be more open space for dialogue. You won’t even answer my questions.

          2. I literally responded to all of your claims regarding “mistruths” and then you just say again that the video is full of mistruths. This is not a good faith conversation with you.

          3. Pull the video. Correct the mistakes. Show cycling volumes that are representative of reality. Answer my questions instead of pretending they are irrelevant and simply ignoring them because you don’t have answers that suit your agenda.

  2. By the way, I rode Park Drive on Saturday and they had reconfigured the cycling path again so that it doesn’t go around the Teahouse and probably allows more car parking. But they had four people directing traffic where cars had to cross the cycling path. The first crossing is at the bottom of the long hill where cycling speeds (and car speeds?) are still high adding to potential serious conflict. Hence four people directing traffic.

    I guess this is all in aid of trying different things which is fair. But I don’ think that a winning configuration.

    1. Lots of suggestions have been sent in to staff at Park Board on improved traffic flow and safety. They are already implementing them, which is great to see. There is a curb ramp at the Rowing Club now for those walking their bikes on the sidewalk to reach the separated lane. More wayfinding signs. I will have to go out in the next day or so and see how the parking lot access has been improved. Kudos to the team.

  3. Personally, I love cycling the seawall. Walking it is pleasant enough, but cycling it is much more enjoyable. Let’s keep the seawall open to both cyclists and pedestrians, even if that means speed limits.

    1. “(I think of him every time I dodge cars through the Kits beach parking lot).”

      It just proves the popularity of the park and you should be thankful to enjoy it! /s

    2. Yup, the Kits movie was made by me. I hope you at least found it a little funny. :o)

      While I cycle myself and enjoy safe biking infrastructure, it isn’t automatic to support any and all cycle infrastructure anymore than as a car driver, I want a highway going through the West End (I don’t!). Kits beach was not about stopping a bike path, as much as it was about preserving green space in an area which has only a limited amount and which is well used by people. Some of us felt it was wrong to put a 12′ wide paved path right through the place where people picnic and play. I hope you understand the difference between framing this as some kind of bike hatred and simply a love of that green space.

      When I cycle to Kits, I have no problem getting off my bike and walking it along the path, or cycling on the residential streets, like so many do, which I find extremely safe. When I was making that film, I asked a number of cyclists around McNicoll and Arbutus and not one said they had a problem cycling there. Clearly some people are perfectly happy with cycling there and others are not. I have no issue with the idea of looking at addressing the parking lot issue or providing some other cycle route which does not take away the green space.

      Same for the beautiful foreshore west of the pool. There was talk at one time of ripping up that path and putting a paved cycle route. Yes, it would have been on the waters edge and stunning, but that path is extremely popular for a stroll and a nature sanctuary, so that bike route was opposed and defeated. Most every other bike route in Vancouver is in place without me making a movie about it, because I support them.

      I just wanted to explain to hopefully give you a little more background.

      1. The best part of the anti-bike path rally at Kits lo those many years ago was the sight of so many people dreadfully concerned about trees holding paper Starbucks cups in hand while they berated Constance Barnes.

        SMH as the kids say.

  4. We walked the seawall today, and honestly it was incredibly stress-free to do so without watching constantly for cyclists. At the end of the day it’s not ideal or terribly safe to have bikes and pedestrians in the same space.
    That’s not a criticism of cyclists, just an acknowledgment that they move at much different speeds.
    As for the cars, the only argument that I can imagine is that a single lane forces drivers to slow down.

    1. I’m confused. I’ve walked the Seawall many times and never had to constantly watch for people cycling. There’s a separate path that’s either at a different height or separated by grass and benches. You have to look both ways for a gap before crossing the bike path but that’s about it.
      But yeah, normally the activities are at different speeds so shouldn’t be mixed. This is a normal design principal. Mixed use paths should only be used in low population areas to save money. In a city with lots of people you need two paths.

      1. I happily stand corrected. It’s been ages since we visited Stanley Park so I assumed they were mixed use paths like all over the North Shore.

      2. Much of the way around Stanley Park the path is separated by a curb, but there are many points where that is discontinuous. Brockton Point, Ceperley Park to Beach Ave, both sides of the underpass at the foot of Chilco, the Coal Harbour entry point, and so on. The other issue is that the cycle path is far too narrow in places, particularly around Siwash Rock, and people walking often report being startled by people on bikes passing by.

    2. They are meant to be on separate paths. If you fear cyclists running into you, isn’t that a problem which needs to be addressed with cyclists who are not riding safely?

      1. Lack of physical separation between modes, lack of crosswalks, paths which do not need minimum width design codes, lack of return routes which pushes all people on bikes onto a crowded west side sea wall path, rigid bollards, pinch points, and a long list of items identified in the approved 2012 Stanley Park Cycling Plan, but sure, let’s blame people who ride bikes.

        Safe cycling starts with safe infrastructure.

        1. Fair comment. Didn’t actually mean to suggest that the issue resides solely with cyclists, but certainly cyclists are a factor in this too. I know also, that pedestrians just walk into the cycle lane, so yeah, a number of things could be attended to in order to improve safety on the seawall, but not a reason to not allow bikes there at all.

      2. Much of the fear is irrational and not based on reality. Nobody intends to hit anyone when they cycle.
        Poorly designed infrastructure that puts different travel modes in conflict is the culprit. You can spend a lot of effort trying to cycle in a considerate way but the built environment can still put you in conflict with people walking. From the perspective of people walking it can appear that the person cycling is inconsiderate or acting unsafely but that’s not what’s really going on.

  5. Some car drivers are already annoyed that a cyclist may move into the “car lane” and actually force them to drive at 30kph

    https://www.reddit.com/r/vancouver/comments/hfzi3a/what_we_have_to_put_up_with_i_assure_you_this_is/

    Funnily enough the rider in the video “outed” himself later and stated his GPS showed he was going 37kph at the time of the recording. But I guess wannabe race car drivers gonna race.

    BTW, somewhat related. We should change the language we use when talk about these re-allocations. Instead of talking about “reallocation of road space” we should talk about the reallocation of “public space”. Why? Because I repeatedly have seen the argument being made about “car lanes” etc. People associate roads with cars, but roads are a public good and de-emphasizing “road space” and it’s association with cars may defang some of the visceral responses people have.

    1. Why change the language, the drive was built for cars. That is an undisputed fact, as was the removal of homes along Beach Ave between Davie and the park to create a “scenic drive”.

      1. It’s not only about the park, it’s about the general use of public space in the cities around the country.

        And just because something was once created for one use doesn’t mean that use cannot change. After all, originally roads were built for humans, horses and carts.

  6. Gee, Gordon, you’re talking directly to me, but without giving me the opportunity to discuss and respond to your concerns. Not to worry, someone alerted me to this.

    I’m glad you are impressed with my movie otherwise though. Being on PriceTags might even help my film career. Some interesting responses in the comment section here. I would be happy to respond to your comments, but I also wrote in the Twitter thread below, since visiting and driving the road yesterday, on Monday. You might be interested to read about my impressions.

    In terms of your post above, you say, “Reverse what you did, Parks Board, go back to the way it was – before March 2020 ever happened – and have a conversation. A long conversation.” You make it sound like I said that, but I didn’t say exactly that, but I don’t have to because the Park Board motion itself specifically says they will have a conversation and dialogue with residents and stakeholders, so it’s not even up to me to wish it to be. It is. What is odd is that the cones went down anyway, without the promised dialogue first. I mean, you may hate the notion of consultation, but let’s put that aside because, in fact, that’s what the Park Board promised to do.

    You will likely respond, “but this is a pandemic response, not that other plan to reduce vehicle traffic”. Ah, but is it? We are in phase three and all other parks are open, including Kits Beach with its walk ways and basketball and playground and volleyball. Everyone is using these facilities now, with the express consent of the Ministry of Health. False creek cycle and pedestrian path is also open, but the Park Board feels that Stanley Park is still in the danger zone. Why? If the motion is not disingenuous, PB should revert the park back how it was now because there is no health justification to keep the seawall closed to cyclists. Then get that promised dialogue going. Remember, one of the motions options is to change nothing at all.

    In terms of the fear of massive crowding on the seawall, the film refers to that and notes that it’s because it’s popular, but that is taken a bit out of context because, in reality, we do not have the tourists here right now that normally take up a lot of space there. The seawall is totally separate to the walking part through a good deal of it and where the lanes are closer, there is still ample room to keep a safe distance, outdoors. Cyclists would not be huffing and puffing on that leisure route. More likely joggers who are allowed there, but everyone has to behave in a safe way and not run up behind someone and breath heavily on them, whether in Stanley Park or anywhere.

    Opening the park would also mean that there are cycle routes on the seawall, the road and the trails. That spreads cyclists out more and those who want to cycle completely away from any car, have the option of the seawall as well. I would also add that a number of serious cyclists have told me that they don’t particularly prefer sharing the road with families trudging along as they get in their way. Here is one quote: “As a fairly serious cyclist for years I would use seawall to start off then the road before the hill and cars were never a problem. Now the hill is much worse and seawall not an option .Now I’m using trails because it’s so ugly now .” Oh yeah, those orange cones are butt ugly.

    Anyway, I discuss this more fully, and with pretty pictures, in this Twitter thread. I hope you will check it out. Cheers. https://twitter.com/VanPoliMorphus/status/1277807822382575616?s=20

  7. In reference to public consultation, David posted “…the Park Board motion itself specifically says they will have a conversation and dialogue with residents and stakeholders”

    Yes, but that was the June 8th Park Board motion, which passed. Read it again. It calls for consultation with respect to the long term feasibility of reducing vehicle traffic in the park, and specifically notes that this is separate from a temporary traffic management plan for the summer of 2020 already being implemented by staff. The report back is due in the fall. We should expect consultation then. The commissioners didn’t need to vote on the temporary traffic management plan, that is an operational issue delegated to the Park Board GM by a Vancouver bylaw. That bylaw specifically addresses allocation of road space, which is up to the City Engineer, except for park roads where it is delegated to the PB GM. This is why there was no commission vote to make the original changes providing more space for people walking on the seawall.

    When a tow truck attends a vehicle accident, they often put cones out. They don’t call a public meeting first. It is understood that they are a temporary measure.

    I walked the seawall to Stanley Park on the weekend. There was not room for people riding bikes; people walking filled both sides.

    You note that you find the cones disturb the serenity of the park. That is exactly what some say about motor vehicles overtaking them.

    You ask that the causeway slip roads to Park Drive be reopened. That isn’t part of the park, it is part of Hwy 99, managed by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. PB staff confirmed that MoTI support the closing of the slip roads.

    It was interesting to review the minutes of the June 18th marathon PB meeting. The tally reported by staff was that in terms of correspondence related to the motion to reopen Stanley Park to pre-COVID 19 conditions, There were 42 letters in support, and 187 opposed, apart from the 1660 letters delivered by HUB opposing the motion. Some speakers commented on the percentage of speakers supporting the motion. This adds to the picture.

    1. Sure, technically they did not contravene the terms of their motion, as you explain, but I think it undermines the trust when there is no real need to be doing this now. If there is justification, it can only be to do with the health emergency related to Covid, and that just isn’t consistent with the Park Board’s approach to any other facility, which are all pretty much open as normal, particularly Kits, which would be the last place to open fully if distancing issues were critical.

      I was at Stanley Park and I saw lots of room. Others who were there on the weekend reported the same and posted pictures on Twitter of a spacious and safe seawall which would easily accommodate both modes. At worst, people would need to be advised to be careful and not treat the seawall exactly as normal, just as we do at the beach.

      You represent only one POV when you refer to cyclists preferring the road car free because, as I mentioned, many actually prefer the road with cars rather than slower cyclists. And speaking for myself and other cyclists as well, we prefer the seawall to bike on as opposed to the road and so to me, on balance, giving cyclists the seawall back as well as the road (with cars) is an outcome which would suggest serves the interests of more people.

      When I read Gordon Price and others bemoaning the notion of consultation and how long it takes, it really does reveal the truth, which is that some just want these barriers up now, before any consultation, and the Covid angle is a convenient reason to hang this on.

      1. Some people cycling prefer the roads car free. Others don’t. There is room for multiple points of view. It doesn’t help IMO to try and assign points of view or motivations based on someone’s then-current mode of transportation.

        The reason that the temporary traffic management is in place is likely because of how successful the first round of changes were. Park board staff and commissioners commented publicly on how much they were learning, how positive the visitor feedback was, and how many more people were using the park compared to prior years. It would be a shame not to learn from new experiences. Thankfully there are PB staff and commissioners who can see that.

  8. Oh, and Jeff, while I have your attention, can you explain something I have commented on previously? You have said publicly that HUB is not in favour or eliminating cars from the park and that this is a red herring meant to inflame opposition. So what does it mean when HUB retweets comments from others who explicitly say, “the park should be car free”. To me, when you retweet without additional comment, it means you are supporting this view. That’s why people rightly lay into Trump for retweeting a racist shouting “white power”, because it is tantamount to approval. (Not conflating Trump with HUB!!) So what do you think people should make of HUB retweeting those comments from, for instance, Shauna Sylvester?

    1. I did not just say it publicly, I went on multiple media outlets and said it in front of cameras on behalf of HUB. HUB’s official position has been shared widely.

      You have fixated here and elsewhere on the retweet by HUB of a post that imagined fewer single occupant vehicles and more electric buses and bikes in the park. Sounds like a conversation worth having, to me.. There is another retweet from HUB of a post by Commissioner Coupar. It doesn’t align with HUB’s position, as you can imagine, but it is part of the conversation. Surely you noted it. But you are cherry-picking.

      You were told all this and were invited to contact HUB to discuss. You didn’t do so.

      Then, in this thread, you suggest that the author should have contacted you to discuss the content of this thread.

      1. I have never received any invite to contact HUB. Not sure what you are thinking. Unfortunately, what you describe as me fixating, is what others take away from HUB’s policy position. HUB retweeted Shauna S: “On so many levels it makes sense to not have SOV return to Stanley Park”. That’s effectively a thumbs up for that view, so I am asking what HUB means by that, and other retweets along the same lines. Not “fewer single occupant vehicles and more electric buses”, but the elimination of cars being allowed in the park. That’s what HUB retweets and I hope you will understand that it gives people the impression HUB aligns with those views.

        I suggested that Gordon might have contacted me since he is actually writing directly to me in the blog, “Well, David…”., but it’s no big deal. I just thought he might want me to explain the video, given his comments. I have obliged him anyway.

      2. “I have never received any invite to contact HUB”

        Direct responses to your tweets. Are you tweeting and blocking? Not cool.

        1. Blocking HUB? No. You mean HUB tweeted an invite to discuss Stanley Park? If so, I’m not aware of it and search doesn’t show it. There hasn’t been any private message either, but no matter, we are here now discussing this.

          I’m asking you to clarify HUB’s position given the retweets of people advocating for a total car ban in the park. It sounds like you are saying that HUB retweets are not actually an indication of supporting the view retweeted, but I hope you can understand that it sure muddies the water and gives people an impression that HUB aligns with those views. When I retweet a view I am not explicitly supporting, I add a comment to explain. In fact, I most always do that unless it’s just a video of a dog doing something funny.

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