Share the Road was at Queen’s Park today for the release of Ontario’s 2017 Budget. We are pleased to share with you that the provincial government will be investing $50 million in commuter cycling infrastructure in 2017-18. This investment is being made as part of the Climate Change Action Plan and is a strong statement in support of building safe, accessible, vibrant and green communities.
Earlier this year, Share the Road called on the province to invest $50 million in cycling infrastructure as part of the budget. We made this appeal in partnership with the Waterfront Regeneration Trust, Ontario by Bike and the Greenbelt Foundation because we know that we need to invest in safe spaces for people to bike if we want to make Ontario the most bicycle-friendly place in Canada. With 82% of stakeholders identifying “infrastructure funding” as the top priority for cycling in Ontario in our recent survey, we know you agree.
We also received support from 51 municipally elected officials, who submitted a joint letter to the province in April to reiterate the importance of investing in cycling infrastructure. As stated in that letter – investments in cycling infrastructure are investments in safe access to public roads.
This investment will enable people to choose cycling for commutes between residential communities, workplaces and major transit stations by implementing cycling facilities and removing barriers to local cycling networks (p. 95 of 2017 Budget). Since announcing the Climate Change Action Plan in June 2016, the province has been consulting with stakeholders regarding how to effectively invest in cycling. To see Share the Road’s feedback and vision for this investment, click here.
We sincerely look forward to working with the province and with communities across Ontario to help leverage this investment to make a significant impact on cycling safety and greenhouse gas emissions.
Considering this transformative investment alongside the announcements made at the Ontario Bike Summit two weeks ago, April has been a truly impactful month for cycling in Ontario. More updates and resources are in the newsletter below.
– Jamie Stuckless, Executive Director
Ontario Bike Summit Announcements
The 2017 Ontario Bike Summit took place on April 11 and 12th in Toronto. We are thrilled to report another sold out event, with over 280 delegates in attendance. As always, the Bike Summit was a venue for inspiring and impactful conversations as well as announcements about the future of cycling in Ontario. A full summary will be available on our website soon. Until then, a few important highlights are outlined below.
Submit Your Feedback on the draft Provincial Cycling Network
The Honourable Steven Del Duca, Minister of Transportation, delivered an update on key cycling projects at the 2017 Ontario Bike Summit. During his remarks, he announced that the draft Provincial Cycling Network had been posted on the Environmental Registry for public comment. You can view the interactive map online and submit your feedback until May 12th.
Tour by Bike: Ontario’s Cycling Tourism Plan
The province’s first cycling tourism plan was announced at this year’s bike summit by The Honourable Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. During her breakfast keynote address, Minister McMahon outlined how this much needed plan will help to highlight Ontario’s existing cycling amenities, while building support for cycling tourism opportunities across the province.
Ontario150: Celebrate by Bike
In 2017, Share the Road has partnered with the Waterfront Regeneration Trust, Ontario by Bike and the Greenbelt Foundation to celebrate Ontario150 by bike. Our 4 organizations are working together to inspire Ontarians to discover some of the best cycling in the world, in their own backyard. From the Great Lakes to the Greenbelt and the Great North, we want to enable residents of all ages to connect with their communities by bike. In addition to the community events and cycling itineraries being developed as part of this project, Share the Road will be leading a cycling education program focused on training thousands of youth across the province over the next few months. The purpose of this work is to help build a stronger cycling culture and a province where families feel safe and confident exploring by bike. Stay tuned to learn more.
1m Safe Passing Law Awareness Video
Our 1m safe passing law video is now available online. Thanks to generous support from the Ministry of Transportation and 8 partner municipalities, this video is available for everyone to use. Please visit our Vimeo page to view the video. You can download our 60 or 30 second clip directly from Vimeo by clicking on the “Download” button below the video, or you can share the link in your newsletter and on social media. We hope that this shared resource will help you raise awareness about road safety in your community.
If you require broadcast quality for a tv-spot, please connect with us firstname.lastname@example.org and we can have that file forwarded to you.