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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Bike parking on Quinpool

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HALIFAX – Quinpool Road is a great place to do a little shopping, grab a bite to eat, or maybe even catch a movie. Unfortunately, if you’re heading to Quinpool on a bike, you might have a bit of trouble finding a place to lock it up.

Sure, you have the standard telephone polls and other road signs, but these can’t really accommodate higher volumes of cyclists. If we truly want to encourage people to move towards more sustainable urban lifestyles, we need to ensure that some of the simple infrastructure needed to make this a convenient transition for people is in place.

Karla Nicholson, general manager of Quinpool Road Mainstreet District Association, says that her organization is aware of the problem: “[The] Association’s board members and I spent a great deal of time working closely with HRM staff to have a major streetscape project done for Quinpool Road, with a proposed starting date of September 2009. Additional bike racks were in that plan, as well as providing a shared bike lane from Monastery Lane to Robie.”

The problem, says Nicholson, is that to make the streetscape plan financially viable HRM and the Quinpool Road Mainstreet District Association needed to get additional funding from the federal and provincial governments. For whatever reason the Province and the Feds just weren’t willing to cough up the dough.

All hope is not lost however; Nicholson says that her organization is working with other Halifax business districts —Spring Garden, Downtown Halifax, and Downtown Dartmouth— in the hopes of figuring out a way to get funding for streetscape projects.

She also said that since the streetscape project is stalled for the time being — and presumably because the issue is getting a bit of media attention here — she will consult her board and HRM about possibly installing more bike racks on Quinpool. Until then, make sure to bring a lock that can reach around a telephone poll.

Photo by Thom Bator



  1. Thanks for this article. Bike parking access is a huge problem all around the city that needs to be addressed. If I were a store owner I’d be inclined to provide my customers with a rack on my own, whether or not the city has the funding. Mountain Equipment Co-op does this, and a few others, and I always take note. We need more people speaking up on behalf of this issue.

  2. Agreed. Getting a couple bike racks here and there shouldn’t have to be something that needs the approval of a larger streetscape project or federal funding. Many of these stores have parking spaces for cars to use, and i’m sure if they headed down to the Dal Planning school or NSCAD there’d be plenty of people willing to create some fun forms of bike parking.