Mission council will consult with the public over its July decision to add bike lanes to Seventh Avenue.
Council voted last week to hold a public meeting in early September to discuss the bike lanes and the effect on parking along Seventh Avenue. After that, it will make a decision on bike lanes and where parking will be allowed along the street.
The decision came after council heard from several delegations concerned about its abrupt decision to add bike lanes to Seventh Avenue and eliminate parking on the north side of the street between Stave Lake and Grand streets.
David Perritt, owner of Grab-A-Java, said the decision to end parking on the north side of Seventh is devastating to his business.
“I was surprised to see this bicycle lane come out of nowhere. Small business is a big part of the community. A bike lane might seem like a small thing, but it has a huge impact. I am concerned about the viability of my business. If it were not for Seventh Avenue street parking, I would not be in business.”
Susan Jackson said many residents on the street did not know anything about the bike lane until they got a notice in their mailboxes that there would be no parking allowed on the north side of the road. Council decided on July 18 to go ahead with the bike lane and prohibit parking on the north side of the street between Stave Lake and Grand.
Mayor Randy Hawes said people along Seventh “had a right taken away” with the sudden loss of parking. He said there needs to be some “proper consultation” with residents before any further decisions are made.
Most members of council said creating bike lanes in Mission is a good idea and the place to start is on Seventh, where several schools, churches and the Leisure Centre are located. It also is close to the hospital.
Council heard details earlier in the day about a transportation master plan which has been prepared by consultant Parsons Canada for Mission. The plan includes adding more bike lanes in Mission in the longer term.