District pushing use of bike lockers to promote active transportation

Use a bike locker eight times per month and its free as Lake Country looks to get people out of cars and into active transportation

Lake Country artist Sheila Tansey beside one of the freshly painted bike lockers in Lake Country.

Lake Country artist Sheila Tansey beside one of the freshly painted bike lockers in Lake Country.

Using the work of local artist, Sheila Tansey, two new bike lockers in Lake Country are now decked out as a form of public art that promotes active transportation.

“We now have the best looking bike lockers in the region and we want to encourage more people to get out of cars and walk or cycle,” said Lake Country director of infrastructure services Greg Buchholz. “When they drive by the new bike locker at the roundabout at Bottom Wood Lake Rd. and Berry Rd., by the bus stop, we hope people will think about using a more active form of transportation like walking or cycling to get around the community.”

Using bikes as a primary mode of transportation is on the rise in past years. A number of municipal staff cycle to work; students cycle, walk and skateboard to school at George Elliot Secondary, as do some of the teachers. A few local business people cycle to work in Lake Country as well and many residents use bicycles as a form of recreation.

“I don’t ride my bike to work,” said Lake Country Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Corrinne Cross, “but I do keep a bike at my workplace for doing lunchtime errands around the community. It helps me put a little more physical activity into my day and feel more connected to the community – besides doing a small part towards reducing vehicle emissions.”

Residents that would like to take transit more frequently but don’t live near a bus stop are invited to cycle and securely park their bike in one of the new lockers (near Municipal Hall and Winfield Memorial Hall) and jump on the bus to get to their destination. The $10/month fee to rent the bike locker will be waived for those using the locker at least eight days per month. Contact the Infrastructure Services department at 250-766-6677 to reserve a locker on a first come first served basis.

“I was one of the first to rent a bike locker at Scott Road skytrain station in Surrey back in 1993,” said artist Tansey. “I rode from home to the Skytrain station and then took the Skytrain into downtown Vancouver. I was an early advocate of the bike to work/school movement for fitness and environmental reasons. I still enjoy cycling for work and pleasure and I am honoured that my paintings were chosen for the new bike lockers in Lake Country.”

Bike to Work/School Week is scheduled for May 30-June 3, 2016 and Lake Country is hosting a “Celebration Station” at Beasley Park Wednesday, June 1 (4 to 6 p.m.).

Buchholz said getting more people out of their cars and into other forms of transportation fits right into the district’s long term plans for road and transportation networks.

“As the road upgrades identified in Lake Country’s Transportation for Tomorrow program are made to include more safe pedestrian pathways, sidewalks and bike lanes, we hope more people in the community will choose to get around using active transportation methods like walking and cycling, and will feel safer doing it,” said Buchholz. “Woodsdale Rd., Bottom Wood Lake Rd., Sherman Dr. and Greenhow Rd. will be upgraded this summer so students heading to school in September will see a positive difference.”