The City took the opportunity, at the time it was doing major water-and-sewer pipe upgrades under the street, to reconfigure Burrard Street on top.
In addition to the existing wide sidewalk, there’s now a separate bike lane.
A raised bike lane on a major arterial like Burrard Street, between Burnaby and Pacific, leading to one of the major intersections in downtown, would have been unimaginable a decade or so ago. And not because the concept would have been rejected by council. It would never have gotten that far, having never been seriously considered by staff in the first place.
Clearly the lesson is that such changes need to be part of a larger plan of upgrades, including benefits to drivers, upgrade of utilities, repaving, etc, and introduced at a time when traffic is going to be disrupted in any event, not just for a bike lane. The same thing happened on Dunsmuir Street, when the cycle track went in after the closures for the Olympics. Few complaints. But when the Hornby separated lane was proposed just by itself, all hell broke loose.
More good news: Musette, the cycling-themed cafe, is back.
It already feels like a popular local hangout, as well as a meeting place for pelotons of MAMLs
Here’s an image that captures Vancouver, c 2017: