New bike lane installed on Crescent Road in northwest Calgary

Crescent Road in north west Calgary on Sunday December 6.
Crescent Road in north west Calgary on Sunday December 6. Mike Hills/Global News

A new bike and pedestrian lane has been added along a popular stretch of road with one of best views of Calgary.

The city installed new barriers along Crescent Road this weekend.

The road was closed to all traffic in April to allow for physical distancing outdoors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Crescent Heights Community Association said the closure transformed the area, allowing more cyclists, pedestrians and dog owners to use the street without worrying about vehicles using the stretch of road as well.

But the city decided to open the street back up to traffic in late October. Some residents had complained that the closure meant there was no parking for them in front of their homes.

The city had temporarily put up orange barricades but those were replaced this weekend with white poles and black parking lot-type barriers, creating a new bike and pedestrian lane.

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In a statement, a city of Calgary roads department spokesperson said residents were made aware of the planned changes.

“The residents were aware that a space was being created on the south side of the road for use by active modes, the statement read.

“The orange barriers were used to do this because they were the most suitable option available. There have been some concerns with the orange barriers and they will be replaced with parking curbs and traffic delineators.”

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John McDermid with the Crescent Heights Community Association said they contacted the city at the end of August to try to get an extended closure. They wanted to run a six-month project through the winter.

While he was disappointed with the road reopening to vehicles, McDermid is pleased with the new bike/pedestrian lane.

“There has been a lot of support for that ever since the road first closed back in April just because there’s a lot of traffic there,” he said. “It’s very much an iconic location and people love to be there on whatever means of transportation — on foot, on bike or by car.”

The new lane means that there will be less parking available on the popular stretch of road.

“That’s good too because a lot of the issues that arose around Crescent Road were just due to the volume of traffic that would accumulate there,” McDermid said.

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