‘They just don’t mix’

Cy­cling P.E.I. says strollers don’t be­long on Char­lot­te­town’s Vic­to­ria Park lane at any time

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FRONT PAGE - BY DAVE STE­WART

Strollers do not be­long on the cy­cling lane in Char­lot­te­town’s Vic­to­ria Park at any time, says the ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Cy­cling P.E.I.

Mike Con­nolly weighed in on Thurs­day on the mat­ter of a Fort Au­gus­tus mother who was ver­bally ac­costed by a cy­clist for walk­ing her child on the cy­cling lane.

The mother told The Guardian that she was push­ing her son in his stroller as her young daugh­ter rode her bi­cy­cle. She also ex­plained that she didn’t feel it was safe to push the stroller and leave her young daugh­ter alone in the cy­cling lane.

Con­nolly said strollers sim­ply don’t be­long on the cy­cling lane at any time.

“We do have some con­cerns be­cause it’s a safety is­sue,’’ Con­nolly said.

“You don’t want to mix young kids and ba­bies on strollers and cy­clists go­ing at a high rate of speed. They just don’t mix.’’

He said the cy­cling lane is strictly for rollerblades, scoot­ers, skate­boards, in­line skates and cy­clists and

that the City of Char­lot­te­town has signs posted that in­di­cate strollers, dog walk­ing, run­ning and walk­ers are pro­hib­ited.

The city’s parks and recre­ation depart­ment in­di­cated on

Wed­nes­day that while strollers are not al­lowed on the cy­cling lane, in this spe­cific case the mother was be­side her young child rid­ing her bi­cy­cle so it was OK.

“We do have some con­cerns be­cause it’s a safety is­sue. You don’t want to mix young kids and ba­bies on strollers and cy­clists go­ing at a high rate of speed. They just don’t mix.’’ Mike Con­nolly

Con­nolly said the bet­ter op­tion for the mother would have been to use the path that runs above the cy­cling lane, where she could push the stroller and her daugh­ter could ride slowly. He’s talk­ing about the paved path that starts at Fan­ning­bank and runs up to the band shell be­fore it turns into a hard­packed clay path through to the main park.

Con­nolly said if the mother is go­ing to break any rule at the park, he’d rather see her push­ing the stroller and the daugh­ter rid­ing her bi­cy­cle on the board­walk.

“Tech­ni­cally, it’s not al­lowed, but then it’s not a safety is­sue. If she’s go­ing to break a rule it’s bet­ter that she stays on the board­walk with a young kid on a 12-inch wheel bike who’s . . . go­ing about a mile per hour.’’

The Cy­cling P.E.I. ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor said his phone was ring­ing off the hook since The Guardian’s story on the mother ran in Thurs­day’s news­pa­per. He said it left cy­clists and peo­ple with strollers con­fused.

“Our fear is be­cause of that ar­ti­cle (strollers) are al­lowed on that bike lane, but they’re not.’’

MAU­REEN COUL­TER/THE GUARDIAN

The City of Char­lot­te­town has these signs posted on ei­ther end of the cy­cling lane at Vic­to­ria Park. The sign states that walk­ing, run­ning, push­ing strollers and walk­ing dogs are pro­hib­ited.

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