Port Moody and Coquitlam get bike path bucks
Tri-City cyclists will benefit from more than $800,000 in provincial BikeBC funding for bike path improvements in Port Moody and Coquitlam.
The biggest chunk of provincial dollars ($652,625) will pay for up to half of the projected $1.3-million cost of building a cantilevered bike and pedestrian path on the Moody Street overpass.
PoMo city staff applied for the grant in the fall after a structural engineering consultant offered the city three options for improving cycling and pedestrian routes across the overpass. The first two options would have widened the existing sidewalk using standard concrete and rebar designs, resulting in a path up to 2.04 m wide.
The third option — the one endorsed by council — uses lighter materials and "modern design techniques" to create a sidewalk width of 3.44 m.
Staff recommended this option, saying it would best serve the community by providing room for two-way cycling and pedestrian travel.
The remaining $650,000 needed for the project will come from development levies of $400,000; a source for the last $250,000 was expected to be found during the 2013 budget process.
Simon Watkins, the Tri-Cities spokesperson for Hub (formerly the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition), said the path is a much-needed link between St. Johns and Murray streets.
"That whole area is pretty difficult," Watkins said. "Murray and Guildford have a nice mixed-use path so this could potentially help with the transition over to Barnet Highway for commuters. It's a very, very positive sign."
Coquitlam's $175,000 in funding was announced last month and will go towards the Coquitlam Fraser Greenway bike path, a 4 km route running along United Boulevard from the Port Mann bridge to the Brunette River, and connecting to the Traboulay PoCo Trail to the east.
Catherine Mohoruk, Coquitlam's manager of transportation planning, said the alignment uses Fawcett and Hartley streets and crosses the Fraser Mills development lands to United Boulevard at King Edward Street. It then travels on United to the New Westminster border, where it connects with Braid Street and continues west.
The Fraser Mills developer is responsible for building its portion of the path and would start in the first phase of development.
Coquitlam will cover the Fawcett, Hartley, Brigantine to Como Creek and United Boulevard to New West portions. Construction has been approved as part of the current five-year capital program and will start this year.