Ever notice how wide the Granville Bridge is? No fewer than eight lanes – four in each direction – span False Creek. That size might make sense if the bridge were linking up with a major highway, but otherwise it kind of seems like overkill.
So why not turn two of those lanes into a tree-lined pedestrian mall – a foot-friendly, cycle-friendly pathway right down the middle of the bridge? That’s one question that city planners are asking as part of Vancouver’s Transportation 2040 report. In total 187 proposals are on the table – everything from widening sidewalks to scramble intersections – in a bid to convert two-thirds of all trips in the city to cycling, walking and public transit by the year 2040.
Right now the proposal isn’t going to council. For the moment, it’s just a concept. But I’d like to hear from you:
What do you think? Should two lanes of Granville Bridge be set aside for a pedestrian mall? Would it make Vancouver a more walkable city?
The Vancouver Sun published an artist’s sketch last week of the theoretical mall over the Granville Bridge. Couples and families with little kids stroll down the middle of the lush pathway, while car traffic whizzes by on either side. Trees and shrubs form a leafy green corridor. Cyclists zip by under a heavenly blue sky. Looks pretty darn nice to me.
But would it work? That’s open to debate. My gut instinct is that it would get plenty of use – from residents and tourists alike. Strolling down Granville Street itself is a consummate Vancouver experience. Wouldn’t it be great if you could continue your walk over the bridge, enjoy some great views of False Creek, then hook up with the galleries, boutiques and restaurants of South Granville?
Of course, that’s just one perspective. Cost and traffic concerns also have to be factored into the equation, plus impact on local businesses.
Do you have an opinion on the Granville Bridge pedestrian mall concept? Let us know!