Monday, May 23, 2011

Friday, May 20, 2011

Internationally renowned city adviser coming to the Comox Valley

Gil Peñalosa, former commissioner of parks, sport and recreation for the City of Bogotá, is coming to the Comox Valley on June 16 and 17. Internationally renowned as a livable city adviser and social marketing strategist, Peñalosa is passionate about vibrant and healthy communities that improve the quality of life for all residents. His talks are designed to re-energize local citizens and politicians: to interest and motivate them to create more people friendly cities — moving from talking about it, to doing it.

In his position in Bogotá, Peñalosa led the design and development of over 200 parks, created a 10-day summer festival, and initiated car-free Sundays. Now, as executive director of Canadian non-profit organization 8-80 Cities, Peñalosa’s commitment to fostering healthy communities remains front and centre.

I am hoping that many of our local politicians and civic and regional planning staff will be able to hear Peñalosa speak. In doing a web search, it is truly amazing to realise just how well respected he is in planning livable communities, whatever size they are.

I also hope that many of our local cyclists will be able to attend his presentation. As soon as I have more details, I will post them here.

BC Cycling Coalition has successful meeting in Parksville

Thursday, May 19, 2011
A Successful Meeting in Parksville
A great meeting on a rainy day. The torrential downpour just before the event ensured that many had soggy feet. The BCCC Moving Cycling Forward forum in Parksville attracted 30 cyclists from all around Vancouver Island. The new Oceanside Cycling Coalition is off to a great start lead by Jim Swanson. It was good to see former VACC President John Fair who now lives in Parksville involved. Participants included Carrie Powell-Davidson the Deputy Mayor of Parksville and Joan Michel the Parks and Trails Coordinator for Regional District of Nanaimo. Their contributions were much appreciated. Thanks to Jim and BCCC Vice President Rob Rao for organizing the meeting.

The meeting started off with presentations by BCCC Board members Jack Becker and Richard Campbell:

Municipalities have Choice for Their Transportation Plans of the Future
Preparing for the Third Wave of Cyclists – Designing cycling facilities for everyone from 8 to 80
Five is the New Twenty – The advantages of quickly completing cycling networks
Provincial and Federal Cycling Strategies – Increasing cycling while reducing collisions

The presentations were followed by a lively discussion of local and provincial issues including:

Cycling tourism and BCCC's Golden Eagles Cycling Routes Proposal
Cycling education in schools
Added cycling paths to existing highways in rural areas
Using unused road allowances for cycling paths
The importance of engaging local politicians

The more we have these meetings in communities, the more we realize the value sharing of success stories, challenges and experience among cycling groups throughout the province. Joining the BCCC email discussion list is one way of sharing such information. This blog is another such opportunity.

To get involved in the Oceanside Cycling Coalition, please go to their website.

The next BCCC forum will be in Abbotsford on July 16 hosted by the the Abbotsford Cycling Action Group. Stay tuned for details.
Posted by Richard Campbell at 6:40 PM 0 comments
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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kinsol Trestle opening soon

The Kinsol Trestle, one of the longest wooden trestles in the world, will be opening sometime this summer. Located west of Shawnigan Lake, the trestle will be part of the Trans-Canada Trail.
Check out the article in the April 28th edition of the Times Colonist

"Finishing touches are being made to the historic Kinsol trestle and the refurbished span should be open to pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders in July.
"I'm very happy with how the project has gone so far," said Brian Farquhar of the Cowichan Valley Regional District parks department.The 187 metre-long trestle has been off-limits for 22 years.

In 2008, the Cowichan Valley Regional District voted to rehabilitate the trestle with funding from the federal government, the province and the Island Coastal Economic Trust.The trestle is expected to be a highlight of the Trans-Canada Trail.
A date for an official opening ceremony will be announced in a month or so, Farquhar said."

Interestingly, the missing link in the Trans-Canada Trail between Victoria and the Cowichan Valley may soon be completed. In the same article, there was mention of plans to complete a 20 km stretch of the trail from just south of Shawnigan Lake south towards Victoria.

"Another project in the works is a 20-kilometre extension of the Trans-Canada Trail from its current terminus south of Shawnigan Lake to an intersection with the Galloping Goose Trail."There are still some segments of corridor we need to secure, both on our side and the Capital Regional District side," said Farquhar. Once the Kinsol trestle opens up, the pressure will be on for the trail to connect to similar trails in Greater Victoria, said Farquhar. "The whole intent is this will be an entirely off-road route from Shawnigan down to Langford," he said.

"I've actually bushwhacked and walked every last foot of it so I am really excited knowing what's in store here."

The trail will follow Shawnigan Creek at the south end of Shawnigan Lake and then head up into the Goldstream heights and it ties into the north end of the Sooke Hills Regional Park. From there, the trail will follow an existing logging road and come out at the Sooke Lake reservoir.

Farquhar hopes that the E&N train will one day bring Victoria residents and their bicycles north to discover Cowichan Valley.

A starting date for the trail's construction has not been set.

Read more:

Friday, May 13, 2011

Victoria International Cycling Festival

This event, the largest cycling event this year in B.C., offers 12 individual cycling-related events and sponsors to-date. The 17-day Festival will celebrate Victoria’s cycling community from May 27 to June 12, 2011. Competitors, cycling enthusiasts and spectators alike can participate in events ranging from a 140 kilometre road ride alongside Canada’s Tour de France hero, Ryder Hesjedal, to big air jumps and stunts, to a relaxing community ride with friends and family, to chilling out with popcorn and a cycling-related movie in Victoria’s beautiful Inner Harbour.

The website can be found at

Thursday, May 5, 2011

BC Cycling Coalition Board Meeting here in Parksville

Moving Cycling Forward Forum –Parksville

Calling all cyclists and interested members of the public in the Parkville, Qualicum Beach, Nanaimo and Campbell River areas.

The British Columbia Cycling Coalition (BCCC) in conjunction with the Oceanside Cycling Coalition is pleased to hold a cycling forum and networking meeting focused on moving cycling forward in the region and the province.

When : Sunday, May 15, 2011 – 12:30 pm – 4pm
Where: Parksville Community Conference Centre, 132 Jensen Avenue East

Presentations by BCCC

Introduction 12:30 pm to 12:45 pm
Presentations 12:45 pm to 3 pm
Open Discussions 3 pm to 4 pm

Preparing for the Third Wave of Cyclists - Designing cycling facilities for everyone from 8 to 80 Jack Becker

What makes an Infrastructure a Third Wave of Cyclists Design
Jack Becker

Five is the New Twenty – The advantages of quickly completing cycling networks Richard Campbell

Municipalities have a Choice in its Transportation Plan for the Future
Jack Becker

Provincial and Federal Cycling Strategies – Increasing cycling while reducing collisions - Richard Campbell

Networking and open discussion with Parksville cyclists

Local Issues and Opportunities – Open Discussion

Opportunities to work together – Open Discussion

Parksville Cycling Direction - Organization, Options, Purpose, Directions

Soaring Eagle Cycling Routes – North Vancouver Island, E&N Railway
Open Discussion

Informal discussion over dinner for anyone interested following the meeting, at a restaurant to be announced.