Plea: On behalf of all biking people
Open letter to Kelowna city council:
I am 12 years old. My family often goes for bike rides together, along busy roads like Lakeshore, Gordon and Dehart.
We often feel unsafe because the bike lanes are dangerous. Once, when we were biking on Glenmore Road, I almost got hit by a dumptruck which was driving not six inches from the bike lane.
My two younger brothers, aged 9 and 8, could have been blown into the road or knocked off their bikes by the force generated from the large vehicles, such as buses and semi-trucks.
In Europe, there are safe, designated bike paths, not sidewalks or bike lanes. They have a sidewalk, a partition, a bike path, a partition, and then the road for cars. We have biked on Cawston Road and we felt so much safer because when a car goes by it doesn’t affect us.
With my triathlon club we often go on road rides. Some members of this group, myself included, have been nearly hit by cars because of inadequate bike lanes.
On Lakeshore Road by the tennis club, the outer line on the bike lane is gone. On Dehart Road, parts of the bike lane are only two feet wide. On Gordon Drive, the bike lane is one foot wide by the Capri Center.
I am concerned about these particular roads because they are among the busiest roads, and often, we have no choice but to bike on sidewalks for fear of getting hit.
Denmark is the happiest country in the world. Why? Because people bike everywhere. My family wishes to do so, but it is unsafe.
Biking is not only healthy for us and the environment, but it is fun, and brings joy to many who participate in this sport. My family drops (the insurance on) one vehicle for six months of the year because Kelowna is a bikeable city and we can get everywhere on our bikes.
Can we please make it safer?
As I write this, I sincerely hope the city will consider what I have written. I write this letter on behalf of my family, my tri club, and all others who love to bike.
If we consider these options, our city will not only be more environmentally friendly, but will be happier.
I, for one, always enjoy riding my bike. On behalf of all biking people, sincerely.