The intersection of McKenzie and Borden has been reconfigured with a two-way bike lane that connects the Lochside Trail. Travis Paterson/News Staff

The intersection of McKenzie and Borden has been reconfigured with a two-way bike lane that connects the Lochside Trail. Travis Paterson/News Staff

Busy Borden better, but still dangerous for cyclists

Cycling lane eases Lochside transfer but drivers still confused

Saanich’s new Borden Street bike lane is so wide and safe, even a car can fit on it.

And so far, reports indicate that more than a few drivers have done just that. Incidents of drivers steering their cars onto the two-way bike lane was among the many conversations Saanich Police summer interns held with cyclists and pedestrians at the Borden Street intersection at McKenzie last month.

Drivers in the bike lane have also been documented on Bikemaps.org, including two encounters for Bike Maps user ID 6142.

“Twice, now, I have encountered a vehicle parked in, or *driving down* the new separated bikeway,” said user 6142. “It is exactly a car’s width wide, meaning there’s nowhere for cyclists to go. There’s no way these people don’t realize it’s not a road.”

Most often the cars turn right into the bikeway from the Saanich Public Works yard, said a cyclist on his morning commute.

Last month the CRD’s Traffic Safety Commission joined Saanich Police and the Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition in greeting pedestrians and cyclists at Borden/McKenzie to raise awareness about the importance of being focused and looking around for other road users at intersections.

Borden is a particularly busy bikeway as it now provides a proper link for the Lochside Trail across McKenzie.

Overall, the new bike lane is a major improvement and the intersection is “much more organized,” said Corey Burger of the GVCC.

“Sixty per cent of crashes happen at intersections and anything we can do to help reduce that number should be pursued,” said Coun. Colin Plant, who chairs the Traffic Safety Commission. “Look, scan and shoulder check at intersections whether you are a driver, motorcyclist, cyclist or pedestrian – we all need to do our part to keep our roads safe.”

reporter@saanichnews.com