Click here to view the Cycling Map.
Bicycle Lanes in the Town of Gibsons
You may have noticed the new bicycle pavement markings on School Road and have may have some questions. This webpage provides details about the bicycle lanes in the Town of Gibsons, and the driving and cycling rules in British Columbia.
Bicycle lanes are reserved for cyclists. Sometimes you will need to cross a bicycle lane to turn right (turning from Gibsons Way to Payne Road for example). Take extra care when doing this. The rules for bicycle lanes are as follows:
- Do not drive, stop or park in a bicycle lane.
- You may only cross a bicycle lane if the white line is broken or to turn into or out of a driveway.
Be aware that bicycle riders have the same rights and responsibilities on the road as drivers. Cyclists, like pedestrians, are vulnerable.
- Allow plenty of following distance.
- Ensure you have enough space if you want to pass a cyclist. ICBC states the minimum distance between a car passing a bicycle rider is 1 metre. A significant number of crashes involving cyclists result in side-swiping.
- Drivers should ensure they signal well ahead, shoulder check and yield to all cyclists.
- Recognize hand signals. A cyclist may signal to turn right by extending the right arm straight out.
- Avoid honking your horn. A loud honk could startle a cyclist and cause a fall.
Why do we have a cycle lane on such a steep hill?
The Town needed to reinstate the lane markings once the water main replacement was complete and took the opportunity to create a designated bike lane for cyclists in the uphill direction.
We moved the centreline over, creating narrower vehicle lanes, which leads to slower vehicle speeds.
Although Gibsons Way is a preferable route due to the slightly lower gradient route to Upper Gibsons, the section of Gibsons Way uphill from the intersection near Molly’s Reach is too narrow to create a safe lane for cyclists.
The Town is looking for opportunities to create a safe area for both cyclists and pedestrians in the future but at this point we do not have adequate available funds to construct the necessary improvements on Gibsons Way.
What do the symbols mean?
These are called ‘Sharrows’ (think ‘Share Arrows’).
When these symbols are marked in the middle of the lane as they are on the downhill section of School Road, cyclists and motorized vehicles merge with each other single file.
When lane widths permit, sharrows are marked off to the side of a lane indicating that cyclists are to position themselves to the side of the lane, allowing enough room for other vehicles to pass safely.
Photo from School Road
A white diamond painted on the road surface marks reserved lanes. Reserved lane signs are also placed over or beside lanes that are reserved for certain types of transit, for example cyclists or buses.
Cars must refrain from driving in these reserved lanes.
Photo from Glassford/Gower Point intersection
Cyclists may be on roadway.
This sign is often seen when there is not a designated bike lane. The sign warns drivers that they must share the road with cyclists.
Photo from Gower Point Road
Why is there a bike lane up School Road and sharrows downhill?
Ideally there would be designated bike lanes in both directions on School Road – unfortunately there was not enough road width or budget to allow for this. Instead a bike lane was installed uphill, as cyclists travelling in this direction are likely to be going at a slower pace. This bike lane prevents drivers from having to cross the yellow line when-over taking cyclists and provides a safer cycling environment.
Sharrows have been installed downhill, as cyclists are more likely to be travelling at the same pace at cars. The location of the sharrow markings indicate that cyclists and cars must travel single file down the road.
Why has the Town eliminated on-street parking on School Road?
Although vehicles on occasion parked on School Road, vehicles were not legally parked as traffic was forced over the centre line to pass any parked vehicles.
Can I park in the bike lane while I am waiting to pick up my children from school?
No, it is not legal to park in a bike lane, even if you remain with your vehicle.
Bylaw Enforcement will be ticketing illegally parked vehicles. Please note that you cannot park on the sidewalks either.
When will we see an alternate cycle route between Upper and Lower Gibsons?
The Town has just received a grant to upgrade the trail that was constructed during the summer of 2015 by TraC volunteers between Shaw Road and Stewart Road. The grant will also pay for creating cycling facilities along Shaw Road up to Gibsons Way.
Being a safe cyclist
If you are a cyclist, you are responsible for sharing the road.
- Be predictable – Follow the rules of the road.
- Be visible – Wear bright and reflective clothing. Ensure you have lights in the dark or poor weather.
- Ride defensively – Be assertive. Think and look well ahead.
- Ride legally – In B.C. you must wear a bike helmet.