(Victoria Buzz)

Red light, green light!

A new pedestrian and bicycle-activated crossing on Cook Street at Richardson Street is now up and running, near Cook Street Village.

The City of Victoria says upgraded curbs and sidewalks were also installed, along with an audible crossing tone to improve safety and accessibility for walkers and cyclists alike.

For one local who has lived in the area for a decade, the new infrastructure is a “fantastic” addition, especially given the heavy vehicle traffic Cook Street sees daily. 

“I’ve lived on that corner for 10 years and seen plenty of near-misses, like cars not slowing for people in the crosswalk or not seeing turning cyclists,” they posted to Facebook.

“I appreciate the lights – it is quite a pedestrian corridor, and this will make it clearer to drivers and walkers,” added another.

The upgrades build on the Richardson Corridor project, approved by city council in 2020, to provide cycling connections between Oak Bay, Fairfield and Downtown while accommodating transit and commercial services.

Corridor construction started last year, bringing new pedestrian crossings, road paving, a neighbourhood plaza, new trees and landscaping, and extra on-street parking from Vancouver Street to Foul Bay Road, according to the city.

City of Victoria

City officials say over 2,500 residents participated in project consultation, including BC Transit, Capital Regional District, ICBC, Victoria Police, Victoria Fire, BC Emergency Health Services, and staff at the District of Oak Bay.

Still, some are voicing frustrations about the new Cook and Richardson Street crossing. One person called it “super ridiculous.”

“…especially how we already have two full-on stop intersection lights. There aren’t enough bike users to have this type of light set up there,” they wrote.

“[The city makes] all these fluff accessories but leave the roads on their ‘cycling corridors’ with worse surfacing than logging roads,” added another.

What are your thoughts?

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