06/28/2013 10:56 EDT | Updated 08/28/2013 05:12 EDT

Residents Demand Moratorium On Kitsilano Bike Lanes

City of Vancouver

About 200 people packed a Vancouver church hall last night to discuss the city's plans to put in dedicated bike lanes on Point Grey Road and Cornwall Avenue.

The overwhelming majority opposed the idea, saying it will rob people of needed parking while pushing more vehicles onto other roads that are already clogged.

“I have a lot of friends on the staff and I ask each of them, ‘Is this your decision, an engineering decision?’ and they all say no,” said former city councillor George Puil, a critic of the plan.

“This is a decision of city council. They are trying to ram this down our throats ... They are really not listening to the general public. Look at the number of people in this room."

The city is looking at two options for Point Grey Road. One would still allow for westbound commuter traffic with new bike lanes added. The other would close the street to all but local traffic between MacDonald and Alma streets, a 1.3-kilometre stretch of road.

City staffer Jerry Dobrovolny told the audience the plan is still a work in progress, and asked everyone to have faith in the process.

"There have been a number of questions. There have been a number of concerns and I have heard a clear request to take more time,” he said.

But residents say city hall isn't really listening and they are demanding a moratorium on any new bike lanes in the Kitsilano neighborhood.

City staff are expected to make their recommendation to council later this summer.

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