No way on a two-way

19 May

After over 40 years, the city of Victoria is contemplating returning Fort Street from a one-way back to a two-way street. The Times Colonist has covered the story, and mentions that a primary reason for the proposition is to increase traffic flow for the area business. It’s certainly a theory that it could work. But at what cost?
Fort Street is currently three lanes plus a bike lane. In order to cram a fourth lane in, something has to go. Certainly they can’t remove the parking spots – that would certainly deter shoppers – so the bike lane would be cut. In a world that is promoting green-friendly travel versus the dependency on fossil fuels, adding more traffic in lieu of bikes seems a bit back-asswords doesn’t it? Suggestions for beautification of the area have been proposed, and would certainly benefit the situation.
The online comments feed is filling up quickly with locals weighing in. It will be interesting to see with the addition of the Times Colonist on Twitter and Facebook whether feedback will stream from those sources. Will it be enough for the council to stop and listen to the masses? What is your take on the topic?


5 Responses to “No way on a two-way”

  1. Jodie May 19, 2010 at 4:00 pm #

    Not sure why they’d have to create a 4th lane… keep two lanes for East-bound traffic and one for West-bound. Better yet, how about a peak-traffic solution (Reversible Lanes) that is used in a lot of places:

  2. Jack Steinmann May 19, 2010 at 4:28 pm #

    Here outside BD’M in downtown Minneapolis, the city recently converted First Avenue South from a one-way to a two-way street. Three lanes of traffic flow, plus parking, has now become two lanes of traffic flow except during rush hour, when two parking lanes become much-needed extra traffic lanes. And, the bike lanes? They’re located between the curb and the parking lanes. As you might expect, a lot of confused drivers have been parking in the bike lanes. And, the ones who park where they should, coming to a halt in the middle of the street, just anger the drivers behind them, who don’t understand the new protocol.

  3. kylabee May 19, 2010 at 4:45 pm #

    Jodie, they had reversible lanes on the bridges in Halifax where I am from and they worked well enough but I am not sure how well that would work on the street? If they have parking there it would make things confusing I would think. I could be wrong.

    And Jack, sounds like you have already experienced the confusion and the frustration. I feel bad for the people driving as well as the riders on the bikes. Not safe for anyone really because angry & frustrated drivers only seem to want to go faster and that is dangerous.

  4. robertrandall May 19, 2010 at 10:24 pm #

    Not all cycling experts agree on the value of bike lanes, with some saying they give a false sense of security.

    We should be mindful of the woman quoted in the TC article who remembered why the City changed Fort from two-way to one-way.

    Some of these traffic ideas are mere “I wonder” scenarios that are quickly shot down by experts. Recall Mayor Fortin’s short-lived high-occupancy vehicle lane idea for Quadra Street.

    BTW, I’m surprised you haven’t mentioned anything about the recent death of the man who co-founded your company, Clare Copeland. It would be a good opportunity to survey the changes in marketing since the firm was founded 30 years ago.

  5. dougbrowncreative May 21, 2010 at 6:18 am #

    Robert I have been working on the Clare Copeland post all week whenever I have a few minutes. Thank you for suggesting what the post should be about.
    For the information of all our readers, Copeland is also working on a tribute to our co-founder as part of our 30th anniversary, details of which we will share here on our blog. Please check for details.

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