For many Hastings Sunrise residents, Nanaimo Street is an important part of our daily routine, so the opportunity to see improvements to both safety and usability between East Fourth Avenue and McGill Street is very exciting. Upgrades may be delivered as part of the sewer separation work which is set to begin in the coming weeks or at a later date.
At the heart of the changes is improving Nanaimo Street to make it safer and more comfortable for everyone by reducing the highway feel of the street. Potential changes would make the pedestrian crossings much safer, especially for those with limited mobility.
The space made available by reducing travel lanes would:
◆ Reduce crossing distances for people walking and discourage speeding
◆ Reduce conflicts between people cycling and driving with painted bike lanes
◆ Improve traffic flow with new left-turn lanes and center medians at key locations
◆ Upgrade ten key pedestrian crossings
◆ Provide bus bulges and curb ramps
◆ Improve and widen sidewalks
Some parts of Nanaimo Street would have a look and feel similar to Rupert Street between East 22nd and East 28th. Key intersections, where traffic is at its busiest such as Hastings and Nanaimo, would not have travel lanes reduced. The proposed changes are informed by the Grandview-Woodland’s Community Plan and align with the City of Vancouver’s Complete Street Vision which aims for streets designed for everyone. This means making travel more comfortable and enjoyable for people using all modes of transport in order to enhance public life and make streets more inviting places.
It also contributes to meeting the goals of the City’s Transportation 2040 Plan and Greenest City Action Plan which aims for zero traffic fatalities and two-thirds of all trips made on foot, by bicycle, rolling or transit by 2040.
The City is working to minimize impacts on residents as much as possible during construction. A minimum of one vehicle lane in each direction will remain open and bus service will be maintained. Most work will impact three-block segments at a time, with construction sometimes active along more than one segment at a time.
The City will be reaching out to residents again via mail and e-mail soon to share what they heard from the first round of public consultation. Visit vancouver.ca/nanaimoupgrades for more information and to sign up for the e-newsletter.
■ Loretta Revoczi