August 26, 2007 (Montreal, QC) — Montreal is soliciting ideas for its next transportation plan and Velo Quebec, a local lobby group, is creating a stir with its proposals according to La Presse. About 15 briefs were received recently by the municipal commission looking at the transportation plan, including one from Velo Quebec, requesting that the AssemblÃ©e nationale (provincial parliament) revise the highway code, allowing for cyclists to legally ride in both directions on certain one-way streets. It was also suggested that bicycles be allowed to use some reserved bus lanes. These suggestions were presented by Suzanne Lareau, president and general director of Velo Quebec.
Lareau pointed out that cyclists are allowed to travel both ways on one-way streets in some northern European countries. “This allows cyclists to take shortcuts along quiet streets,” she remarked. And she cited Paris, France, as a city where cyclists are allowed to use reserved bus lanes, qualifying that experience as “a success.”
Also heard were suggestions advanced by the Conseil rÃ©gional de l’environnement (a non-profit environmental group) to reduce the number of car parking spots in Montreal and make car parking more expensive. Another suggestion was to open more pedestrian streets, especially between parks.
Lareau, speaking at a separate event on August 16, called for the yet-to-be-built de Maisonneuve Blvd. bike path, traversing downtown between Berri St. and Greene Ave., to be named in honour of Claire Morissette who passed away in late July. Morissette was the long-time director of Le Monde a Bicyclette, a rival bicycle lobby group also based in Montreal. Morissette was active for over three decades lobbying for this bike path be built and the Montreal city administration indicates that construction is now imminent.