Peterborough earns Bronze status as a bicycle friendly community at Ontario Bike Summit
Peterborough’s status as a more bike friendly city was recognized this week at the Ontario Bike Summit in Toronto. Sponsored by Share the Road Cycling Coalition, an Ontario-based cycling advocacy organization, the fourth annual Bike Summit brought a range of speakers, experts, interest groups and political types together to discuss the role of bikes in Ontario life (and how to improve or increase that role).
As reported in The Peterborough Examiner, the award is recognition of the improvements Peterborough is making to better integrate cycling into everyday life in the City. Peterborough was in good company with several high growth cities, as Guelph, Mississauga, Oakville, Richmond Hill and Welland also gained the Bronze status distinction this year. The summit website indicates our MPP Jeff Leal was confirmed to attend the Queen’s Park reception for the event.
The awards are part of the Bicycle Friendly Communities Program, an initiative created by the Washington-based League of American Bicyclists and brought to Ontario under sponsorship of the Trek Bicycle Corporation and the Bicycle Trade Association of Canada. Under the program, cities must demonstrate achievements in the areas of Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation & Planning. The more significant the achievement, the higher the status. Peterborough has committed to building and designating more on-road bike lanes and off-road bicycle paths over the next two decades as part of its infrastructure plans. Organizations like the Peterborough Bicycle Advisory Committee (P-BAC) also contribute to the City attaining this status. Our Bronze status recognizes that, while we are doing well, there is more to do.
One of the highlights of the summit was the focus on improved data. Data that is quantifying the benefits of cycling (and walking), making it clearer to decision makers and the public the real economic return on investment in cycling infrastructure. Delegates also heard success stories from London and Copenhagen. There is a brief write-up on the summit on the Dandyhorse magazine blog. While only available for a few days, tweets from the summit can be found under the #obs2012 hashtag.
Update: Here is the official bulletin from City of Peterborough website
The Share the Road Cycling Coalition (Web, Twitter, Facebook) is a provincial cycling advocacy organization created to unite cycling organizations from across Ontario and work with and on behalf of municipalities to enhance their ability to make their communities more bicycle- friendly. The organization’s mandate is province-wide with a specific focus on developing public policy at the provincial level in order to provide the kind of legislative, programmatic and funding instruments such as exist in other Canadian provinces notably Quebec and British Columbia.