Don’t take our parking, Glebe retailers plead; Councillor’s plan to turn over lanes to buses roundly rejected

Glebe businesses are dead set against an idea from their city councillor that would take two lanes currently reserved for parking and use them exclusively for buses, the business improvement area executive director said Friday.

Christine Leadman said those parking spaces were essential for businesses in the area and any increase in traffic from people taking buses would not be enough to make up for the lost sales.

The councillor for the area, David Chernushenko, said Thursday that using two of the lanes exclusively for buses at certain times might be the only way to deal with the expected increase in traffic arising from the redeveloped Lansdowne Park.

The Bank Street businesses are already worried about having to compete with the new retail stores planned for the park, Leadman said, and reducing the number of parking spaces on Bank would only make the situation worse.

“The business area here or in any area survives by the (car) traffic that is generated to the area and by the parking that is allowed, the on−street parking,” said Leadman, a former councillor. “To eliminate that is at the expense of us, the smaller merchants.”


The redevelopment of Lansdowne Park, which includes the addition of retail stores and the renovation of Frank Clair Stadium, is expected to greatly increase the amount of traffic through the area.

The current plan will reduce the number of parking spaces available at Lansdowne Park to 1,350 from 2,200.

This means people going there by car will have to rely more heavily on parking in the area around the park.

The only way to easily get people in and out of the area will be to encourage them to use other methods of transportation, Chernushenko said.

That was why he came up with the idea of converting one lane in each direction on Bank Street for bus−only use at least part of the time. He said he believed this would encourage people to use public transit.

Even if that does happen it won’t do anything to help businesses, Leadman said.

Don’t take our parking, Glebe retailers plead; Councillor’s plan to turn over lanes to buses roundly rejected “You can’t escape the reality that people drive their cars, and to suggest that people are going to get onto a bus, just because, is not proven,” she said.

There are 225 parking spaces along Bank Street in the Glebe, according to information provided by the city at a public meeting on Thursday.

Another concern of the business owners is that the dedicated bus lanes would make it easier for people to travel through the area. This would make it less likely people would stop at Glebe businesses and also make it less friendly for pedestrians and cyclists.

Leadman said she had already heard from a number of business owners who were against the idea.

Chernushenko made the comments at a public meeting where city officials and transportation consultants fielded questions from local residents about how Lansdowne Park redevelopment would affect traffic in the area.

Source : Ottawa Citizen

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