Phase One of a more than $3-million Coquitlam construction project along Guildford Way has begun.
It's ultimate goal: to enhance and implement protected lanes for the safety of all micromobility users, including bikers and scooters from passing vehicles.
The Guildford Greenway initiative stretches 2.1 km from Johnson Street to the Port Moody border. It will consist of a series of concrete curbs separating the road from the painted bicycle lanes.
Bus stops along Guildford will also receive safety upgrades during the process.
As a result, motor vehicle traffic is likely be impacted significantly for commuters passing through the City Centre neighbourhood.
Guildford Way westbound will be reduced to one lane between now and September as crews will be on site 12 hours a day — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. — on weekdays.
"Providing protected micromobility lanes for cyclists and scooters in this busy corridor is important to improve the safety and level of comfort for users of all ages and abilities," said Douglas McLeod, Coquitlam's transportation director, in an earlier statement.
"The improvements were identified in the City Centre Area Plan, and are in line with the best practices expected to be established in the update to the Strategic Transportation Plan, currently in development."
The first phase will see upgrades to the north side of Guildford Way between Johnson Street and Lansdowne Drive.
A city alert said drivers and cyclists should share the road and signage has been posted to safely direct all users that need this thoroughfare on a daily basis.
Coquitlam also advised commuters should give themselves extra time if they need to get from 'A' to 'B' using westbound traffic.
The Guildford Greenway consists of a $2.5-million investment from TransLink, via its municipal cost share programs, and $500,000 from the B.C. government's active transportation infrastructure grant initiative.
Micromobility modes of transportation have evolved, including skateboards and electronic versions of bikes and scooters.
McLeod said Coquitlam has especially noticed an uptick of local residents using sustainable transportation in the City Centre and Burquitlam neighbourhoods as they've developed into transit-heavy areas in the last few years.
Monday (June 5), the city's council-in-committee awarded contracts to Lime Technology and Neuron Mobility to supply 130 e-Bikes and 450 e-Scooters for Coquitlam's new e-Mobility pilot program.
The two companies will design, install, own, operate, maintain and manage the new dockless electric bike and electric kick scooter sharing system for 18 months.
At the same time, city staff will collect data about the use, demand and public safety of the electric vehicles.
The inaugural zone of City Centre will include north of Coquitlam Centre mall, as well as the Lincoln and Lafarge Lake–Douglas stations, Coquitlam Public Library, city hall, Town Centre Park and Douglas College.
Meanwhile, in 2024, the Guildford Greenway project will see micromobility lanes from Johnson Street to Pinetree Way moved off the road and onto the boulevard between the sidewalks and curbs.
McLeod said the upgrade will ultimately connect existing multi-use pathways around Town Centre Park.
He noted a phase three is also on the table to extend the micromobility lanes to Pipeline Road, where Guildford becomes Ozada Avenue.
Additional upgrades to the campaign also include improved lighting, landscaping and wayfinding signs.
As well, Lougheed Highway commuters will also notice some construction taking place in Coquitlam this week.
Crews are working on a new multi-use pathway between Pinetree Way and Westwood Street on the north side of Highway 7
Westbound traffic is currently limited to a single lane. Eastbound is now impacted by the project.
Workers will be on site each day until Friday (June 9) from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and all road users are asked to give extra time.
- with files from Janis Cleugh, Tri-City News