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Vancouver councillor wants bicycles to be licensed

A Vancouver councillor is calling for bicycles to be licensed in the city.

That comes after a cyclist was accused of nearly running over a pregnant woman after ignoring a stop sign.

Residents around the intersection of York Avenue and Cypress Street in Vancouver say it is not uncommon to see cyclists fail to stop at the stop sign.

“It’s not very safe, especially when there are lots of young kids and especially near a school,” said one resident.

The problem is not exclusive to this location and happens everywhere.

Vancouver city councillor Melissa De Genova wants to do something about it.

“On Tuesday I’m bringing forward a motion to Vancouver city council that’s going to ask our staff to look into a system of licensing and registration for bicycles,” she said, adding that her plan would also help police reunite stolen bicycles with their rightful owners.

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“This isn’t about punishment, this is about accountability.”

But the cycling advocacy group, HUB, said regulation will do little to make the streets safer.

“It doesn’t always improve incident reporting and accountability,” said executive director Erin O’Melinn. “And some folks think it will improve bike theft recovery and it also hasn’t been shown to improve that after.”

HUB believes the better way to improve peoples’ cycling skills and etiquette through education.

-With files from Linda Aylesworth

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