Macdonald Bridge Bike Lane Delay

A cyclist crosses the Macdonald Bridge Bicycle Lane

People who walk and bike are frustrated that the MacDonald Bridge bicycle lane and sidewalk have been closed for two years, inconveniencing people for much longer than initially promised. While the Halifax Cycling Coalition is part of the group that lives this inconvenience daily, we have worked closely with Halifax Harbour Bridges over the years and understand the challenges they are experiencing in this complicated engineering project.

The Halifax Cycling Coalition is looking forward to the re-opening of the bicycle lane on the MacDonald Bridge, that is currently projected for the end of June. The bicycle lane on the MacDonald Bridge was a key connection for many people’s daily commutes, approximate 500 people per day used the Macdonald Bridge prior to closure. The bike lane was originally scheduled to re-open in March*. However, due to complications with other aspects of the Big Lift project, the opening of the bike lane was delayed until June.

Until the MacDonald Bridge reopens, people can bring their bicycles onto the bus, ferry or use the shuttle service provided by the Big Lift project free of charge. All transit is free for people with a bicycle from June 2-11 and part of HRM Bike Week.

Although we are not a part of the protest ride today, we understand the frustration of having to wait for the bike lane on the MacDonald Bridge to reopen. We support HHB taking the appropriate steps to ensure that the those participating in the protest today can do so safely.

There will be no changes to the bicycle lane from when it was closed in June, 2015.   Staff are currently working on modifications to the bicycle lane that will make it accessible for people of all ages and abilities. The preferred option for an all ages and abilities fly-over ramp will be presented to the city’s Transportation Standing Committee in July. The bike lane will remain open during the construction of the flyover ramp.

The Halifax Cycling Coalition is working hard both in public and meetings with city staff to ensure that the flyover ramp continues without delay.

*Clarification: The original HHB schedule anticipated the bike lane to be open in December, before being delayed to March, June, and finally end of June.

4 comments on “Macdonald Bridge Bike Lane Delay

  1. David Hayes says:

    The protest is noting short of disgusting. Workers coming home from work and other transients did no harm to cyclists-so why are they doing harm to ordinary working people and usual traffic wanting to cross the harbour. This is not a joke and I adamantly wish that every “biker” taking part in this atrocity watch their bike disappear in front of them. I strongly urge and will be doing so the public renege any support they originally had or would have had for the Cycling coalition of this city.
    You se yourselves back 10 years as far as I am concerned.

    1. Chris Poulain says:

      Mr Hayes. When i read that press release above I see that the HCC wasn’t involved or supported the ride yesterday. Why then are you on this website complaining like a spoiled baby? Do you always blame complete strangers for the actions of other complete strangers? I’d like to sympathize with you but i think you’re an angry moron who’s support isn’t needed or wanted. Go cry somewhere else. I’m sure the “protest” (i wasn’t part of it or support it) affected you in no way, shape or form.

  2. Rob Stevenson says:

    I think you’re a bit too steamed up about this David. Protesting when necessary has a long and glorious history — not that our little protest lived up that. 😉

    As it turned out, it was a very successful protest ride. I was afraid there’d be only a few of us rabble rousers, but there were at least 23 (a few road away before I counted them). It didn’t look like any great inconvenience was caused to car drivers — probably because it had been in the news all day so many drivers would have avoided that bridge, but also because traffic is winding down at that time of day. Drivers were unabusive and polite, and the bridge employees and two Halifax Police officers who accompanied us were pleasant and helpful. (I made sure to thank them for their help and courtesy.)

    The ride, of course, was just the catalyst. The main point was made in and by the media coverage from CBC, CTV, Global, and the Metro News. It’s not possible to know for certain, but I suspect we just made it much harder for the proverbial ‘them’ to delay opening the bike and pedestrian lanes again. And that, after all, was the ultimate goal.

  3. Bozo Theclown says:

    Why allow comments on press releases? So the internet can bring the casual hate-speech formerly of news comment threads directly to your front door?

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