A group of cyclists enjoys the sunny warm weather near Fort Langley on Wednesday, Feb. 18. A just-released Township study calls for a massive expansion of cycling trails in the community.

A group of cyclists enjoys the sunny warm weather near Fort Langley on Wednesday, Feb. 18. A just-released Township study calls for a massive expansion of cycling trails in the community.

Township unveils 50-year, $80 million cycling plan

Ultimate Cycling Network would add hundreds of kilometres to existing trails

An ambitious long-term expansion of bicycle trails in Langley Township would take several decades and $80 million to build.

The “Township of Langley 2015 Cycling Plan,” posted on the municipal website on Feb. 16, would multiply the current amount of available cycling trails by at least eight times.

The plan “is projected to be completed in stages over the next 50 years, subject to the availability of funding” the report states.

Langley Township currently has 64 kilometres of on-street cycling lanes, which would ultimately increase to 360 kilometres of on-street cycling lanes and another 160 kilometres of off-street cycling trails by 2065.

The $80 million construction cost, calculated in 2013 dollars, doesn’t include the expense of land acquisition or maintenance, projected to be another $1.2 million per year for “street sweeping, road marking, signage maintenance, bike symbols, and pavement repairs.”

The plan would add new bike routes on 96 Avenue, 102B Avenue, 199A Street, 201 Street, 202 Street connecting to the Golden Ears Bridge, 72 Avenue, 80 Avenue, 86 Avenue, 200 Street, 202A/202B Street, 206 Street, 208 Street in Willoughby, 48 Avenue, 56 Avenue, 216 Street, 222/224 Street in Murrayville, 264 Street in Gloucester, 24 Avenue, 32 Avenue, Highway 13 in Aldergrove, as well as 20 Avenue, 24 Avenue, 28 Avenue, 32 Avenue, 200 Street, 204 Street, 208 Street, 224 Street, and 248 Street in South Langley.

It would also add new routes on 52 Avenue in Murrayville and produce “significantly changed” routes in Brookswood, Walnut Grove, and Willoughby.

The report says priority should be given to “cycling routes in higher density and higher demand areas” between communities like Walnut Grove, Willoughby, Willowbrook, Brookswood/Fernridge, Murrayville, and Aldergrove.

“Urban areas hold more population and employment, thus generating more cycling trips,” the report states.

The report says eight such routes totaling 41 kilometres of on-street cycling should be built first.

The Township currently spends $5 million a year on transportation infrastructure, most of it from Development Cost Charges (DCC) paid by developers, but only $80,000 of that goes to cycling facility construction (which gets a matching grant of $80,000 a year from TransLink).

The report suggests the Township seek additional funding from other sources, such as BikeBC, a $31 million program for cycling infrastructure and the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) Road Improvement Program (RIP), as well as the federal government.

The plan also calls for new regulations, using City of Surrey requirements as a guideline, that would set a minimum number of bicycle storage racks at multiple-unit residential buildings, retails outlets, schools and other buildings based on their size.

Interested residents are being asked to download and read the full report, then fill out a questionnaire for emailing to the Transportation Department Engineering Division before Monday, April 13.

Langley Times

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