Yesterday, City Council passed a resolution urging the Provincial Government to use the provincial cap and trade program to provide $200 million for cycling infrastructure across Ontario over the next four years. A letter of support from Mayor Crombie will be sent to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and other municipalities across Ontario through the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO). The letter will encourage other municipalities to join with Mississauga in calling on the Province to act.
“There is a strong interest in building and investing in cycling infrastructure to promote active and healthy living in Mississauga,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “The City of Mississauga’s Living Green Master Plan and Cycling Master Plan also support the Provincial Government’s Ontario Climate Change Strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and build a prosperous low-carbon economy. Like Mississauga, many other municipalities have similar plans and initiatives to increase their cycling infrastructure and I hope they will join our city in calling on the provincial government to increase investments in this critical infrastructure. These investments will complement those being made at both the provincial and federal levels in infrastructure such as public transit that will improve the lives of residents and reduce emissions.”
“The Mississauga Cycling Advisory Committee (MCAC) is very focused on the important role cycling can play in meeting our climate change goals,” said Chris Fonseca, Ward 3 Councillor and member of the Mississauga Cycling Advisory Committee. “We have implemented a very successful Community Ride Program which has increased cycling greatly throughout the city. An Ontario wide poll, Share the Road 2014, shows that 4.5 per cent of Ontario residents ride a bike at least monthly and that 54 per cent of Ontario residents want to cycle more than they currently do. The poll also indicated that many would be encouraged to cycle more if there was more and better cycling infrastructure available. Mississauga has made great progress closing gaps in our cycling infrastructure. Closing these gaps will increase the safety of our residents and encourage more cycling as a means of transportation. An investment in cycling infrastructure will improve and enhance the multi-use trail system.”
The City’s cycling network includes more than 400 kilometres of on-road bike lanes, boulevard multi-use trails, off-road trails as well as roadways with posted bike route signs. Through the Cycling Master Plan, the City plans to develop more than 900 kilometres of on and off-road cycling routes in the next 20 years. More than 1,000 Mississauga residents and stakeholders contributed their thoughts and ideas to help develop this plan. The plan focuses on fostering cycling as a way of life in the city, building an integrated network of cycling routes and aims to adopt a safety first approach to cycling. The Cycling Master Plan vision is to make Mississauga a city where people choose to cycle for recreation, fitness and for their daily transportation needs. The plan will provide an integrated multi-modal approach to transportation throughout the city to connect destinations and place 95 per cent of the city’s population within one kilometre of a primary cycling route.