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Six bikes trump one car

Kris Nichols, chair of the active transportation advisory committee and Rick Marshall of the Oak Bay parks and recreation commission share a laugh as they fasten their bikes to the new bike corral installed on Oak Bay Avenue. - Christine van Reeuwyk/News staff
Kris Nichols, chair of the active transportation advisory committee and Rick Marshall of the Oak Bay parks and recreation commission share a laugh as they fasten their bikes to the new bike corral installed on Oak Bay Avenue.
— image credit: Christine van Reeuwyk/News staff

Six two-wheelers fit comfortably in the latest parking addition near Oak Bay Avenue.

At the corner of Hampshire Road a new bike rack fills the space of one car and can hold up to eight bikes.

“We are proud to introduce the first of what we hope will be several bike corrals located in key business areas in Oak Bay,” said Coun. Michelle Kirby, council liaison for the Active Transportation Advisory Committee. “Providing convenient and secure bicycle parking for our residents and visitors who cycle in our community is an important part of the ATAC’s planning work.”

“We see the value in the bike rack in that it adds the opportunity for people cycling to come downtown to the Oak Bay village to do some shopping. And we need to increase more and more of the awareness and ability for people to park their bikes downtown,” said Kris Nichols, chair of the active transportation advisory committee.

Biking infrastructure improvements will only add to the business bustle of the Avenue agreed Mayor Nils Jensen.

“We want to encourage biking. It helps people’s health, it’s great for the environment and of course, I think it really is good for business,” he said.

“It’s a win-win-win situation, great for health, great for the environment, great for business.”

Infrastructure and installation for the improvements cost about $1,572.

“This idea of having more bike parking on the Avenue came up at the parks and recreation commission a few months ago, and it’s been supported by staff, by council and the active transportation committee since then,” said Rick Marshall of the Oak Bay Parks and Recreation Commission. The Business Improvement Association suggested the site, he added. “People are coming to the village to shop, for dining, for entertainment and for recreation … and more and more they’re coming on foot, by bike or by transit. That’s calling for more bike parking than we’ve had in the past.”

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