WATCH: The day after a cyclist was killed in downtown Victoria, attention is turning to the city’s biking infrastructure. Monica Martinez reports.
Flowers mark the spot where a woman tragically lost her life.
The 73-year-old was an experienced cyclist, riding every day, regardless of the weather.
Sources tell CHEK News she was on her way to a volunteer meeting at Government House when she was hit.
She had been volunteering in the city parks department for years doing planting and restoration work. People who knew her say she was a bright soul, beautiful inside and out.
She was using the southbound bike lane on Government Street near Fisgard when she was killed by truck turning right.
Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps said right now the infrastructure for bikes downtown is terrible.
The mayor says it’s a tragedy that could have been prevented.
“If there was a barrier that would not have happened, that would not have happened, because she would have been in the separated bike lane,” Helps said.
Designing some form of barrier between cyclists and motorists is currently in the city’s “Biketoria” plan.
The proposed $7.75-million project is funded through the gas tax and would see separated bike lanes on eight corridors, including Government Street
“However old you are and whatever your cycling ability, even if you have never biked on a main road before, you’ll be able to get to anywhere in the city from anywhere in the city by bicycle,” she said.
Cylcing advocate Edward Pullman said it’s a good start but more can be done to increase bike safety.
“The other step is what can we do at intersections to improve intersection safety,” he said.
“So whether that is separate signals for cyclists to travel through, dedicated right hand turn lanes with dedicated turns and restricting those turn movements and only having a dedicated turn phase.”
Victoria City Council will vote on the Biketoria proposal in April.
If approved, the separated bike lanes would be finished by 2018, infrastructure which would make cyclists on the road feel much safer.