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Active Transportation

Active transportation is any form of human-powered transportation. Walking, cycling, wheeling, in-line skating, skateboarding, and ice skating are all forms of active transportation. It can also involve combining modes such as walking/cycling with public transit.

The Active Transportation and Sustainability Advisory Committee meets on a monthly basis. Please contact the Clerks Office at (705) 739-4220 ext 5500 or with any questions regarding agendas.

School Transportation

Safety in school zones is eveyone's responsibity. Here are a few reminders for students and parents/guardians that attend Barrie schools:

  • If you live in a walk zone, the best way to get to school is by walking or biking. This promotes physical activity, helps the environment and minimizes traffic around schools during busy times.

If you have to drive your child(ren) to school, watch your speed and be aware of students and staff in the parking lot, follow the rules of the school's drop off/dismissal program and have respect for the surrounding community—don’t block resident driveways or businesses. More tips on active school transportation can be found at Ontario Active School Travel.

Active Transportation Planning Techniques

Bicycle Lanes

A bicycle lane is a portion of roadway that has been designated by pavement markings for the use of bicyclists. Bicycle lanes have most recently (2019) been implemented on the following Barrie streets:

  • St. Vincent Street between Hanmer Street East to Livingstone Street East
  • Tiffin Street between Ferndale Drive to Essa Road (buffered lanes)

A sharrow is a road marking which shows a bicycle with two chevrons. It is meant to be a reminder for residents to share the road when driving or cycling, but unlike a bike lane, a sharrow does not impact on-street parking. In addition to the pavement marking symbol, supplemental road signs are also posted to remind users to “Share the Road”.

The City has introduced sharrows in 2016. The first sharrows were installed on Grove Street (from Toronto Street to Penetanguishene Road). The Active Transportation Working Group identified Grove Street as a preferred bike route in the city.

Road Diets

A road diet is characterized by reallocating space on the roadway to other modes of transportation, such as cycling or transit.​ This improves active transportation, potentially reduces speeds, and maintains capacity for vehicles. Road diets havem most recently (2019) been implemented on the following Barrie streets:

  • Dean Avenue between Big Bay Point Road and Mapleview Drive East
  • Livingstone Street East between Cundles Road East and Stanley Street
Urban shoulder

An urban shoulder is a painted white edge line that creates a separated cycling facility from the vehicle travel lanes where dedicated cycling facilities are not provided. An urban shoulder improves the operation and safety for cyclists as it provides a separate travel lane from vehicle travel, and offset from roadside obstructions such as catch basins. Urban shoulders have most recently (2019) been implemented on the following Barrie streets:

  • Marsellus Drive between Mapleton Avenue and Mapleview Drive West
  • Mapleton Avenue between Ardagh Road and Essa Road
Road Right-sizing

Road Right-sizing: a reallocation of space used for cars on a street for other users. Eliminated/narrowed traffic lanes are used for other purposes, such as active transportation.

A component of the City's Multi-modal Active Transportation Master Plan (MMATMP) is Road Right-sizing. Barrie's road right-sizing takes large roadways with under-capacity traffic (low volumes) and introduce steps to provide bicycle lanes and opportunities for residents to access their properties without disrupting through traffic. The improvements benefit all modes of transportation including transit, bicyclists, pedestrians, and motorists. Benefits include traffic calming, reduced collisions and injuries, improved mobility and access, and improved livability and quality of life. Traffic Services staff perform Before & After Studies on roadways to gauge effectiveness.

City Hall Bike Lockers, Racks, & Repair Stand

3 bicycle lockers and 4 street pod bike racks are available at City Hall (Worsley St. entrance) for free use. Up to 6 cyclists can store their bikes in separate locker compartments secured with their own lock. Frame and wheels can be secured with one lock on the street pod unit. Racks are also installed at City recreation centres for public use.

In addition, a repair stand provided by Cycle Simcoe is available for free use in case of a minor bicycle maintenance emergency.

Rules & Locker Protocol
Report any concerns or issues to the City Hall info desk.

  1. Lockers are on a first-come-first-serve basis.
  2. Use at Own Risk.
  3. U-bolt shaped locks work best. Check for secure closure if cable or chain locks are used.
  4. Personal locks and contents are to be removed at the end of each day.
  5. Any personal contents and locks left on overnight will be removed by the City without compensation to the Owner.

Take Action

Tips to help you adopt more active modes of transportation:

  • Think twice about using your car for every trip. Could you walk or use your bike to visit friends?
  • Dust off your bicycle and cycle to work when the weather permits.
  • Trade in your dress shoes for running shoes, strap on a backpack and walk all, or part of the way to work/school.
  • Instead of driving your kids to the park, why not make it a family outing on your bikes.
  • If you are moving, think about the transportation options available to you in the new locations you are considering. How far will the distance be to the places you regularly need to get to? Could you walk to do most of your small errands? How far away is the nearest school for your child? Is this new neighbourhood 'pedestrian friendly'?

    Source: Public Health Agency of Canada

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