‘Poorly planned’: Saanich man says bike lane helped cause crash – cyclists loudly disagree

A former Saanich City Council candidate’s comments about a Wednesday morning crash involving a car and a bike lane barrier have sparked back-and-forth debate over where the blame lies.

Engineer Vernon Lord, who is running for Saanich Council in 2022, posted a photo of the accident (above) that happened at 8 a.m. on Wednesday (April 5) in front of Gorge Road West Tillicum Road.

A driver damaged his vehicle by jumping on a barrier installed to create a protected bike lane.

“Excitement on a poorly planned bike path @Gorge/Tillicum is ‘cold as hell,'” Lord tweeted.

The tweet quickly drew criticism from dozens of local cyclists, who praised the fence for protecting riders from the driver.

In an interview with Black Press Media, Lord clarified that he was “half-joking” and that he does support protected bike lanes “if they are properly designed.”

Lord worries about the barriers installed on this stretch of Tillicum, which he drives past at least twice a day. Lord says the bike lane is what the Saanich fast lane says, “Look how fast we can do it.”

“But it was a poorly planned project,” Lord said, adding that its location on narrow roads and curves could easily “catch drivers off guard”.

“If your mind wanders for even a second, you’ll master it,” Lord said.

Black Press Media asked the Saanich District for comment on the bike lane, but did not receive a statement by the deadline. This story will be updated if the school district responds.

The cycleway is being defended by the cycling community, including Victorian not-for-profit Capital Bike.

Corey Burger, Chairman of Policy and Infrastructure at Capital Bike, said: “Saanich’s rapidly building protected bike lanes on Tillicum proved effective this morning as they deter drivers from accessing bike lanes and potentially injure pedestrians or cyclists. “Black news media.

Commenters responding to Lord’s tweet were critical of drivers and drivers in general — emphasizing the need for such protected bike lanes.

“If you can’t even drive in a straight line without hitting the curb, you shouldn’t be driving,” tweeted @bencsin.

@RealLuckless tweeted: “Drivers who failed to keep their car in line safely and securely stopped after driving through a visible obstacle without risk of hitting anyone.”

Others came up with proposals to improve protected bike lanes.

“While I don’t think this is acceptable driving, I wonder why these ‘thumping curbs’ aren’t painted bright yellow, white, or add something reflective,” IslandFamily5 tweeted. “When it’s dark and raining, they can’t see.”

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