Bikes continue to be allowed on CTrains during rush hour as city extends pilot project

A bike is peaking out of a CTrain in this 2016 file photo. (Evelyne Asselin/CBC - image credit)
A bike is peaking out of a CTrain in this 2016 file photo. (Evelyne Asselin/CBC - image credit)

The City of Calgary is extending its bike pilot project on CTrains until the end of this year.

The pilot, which allows riders to take their bicycles on the LRT at all times of the day and not just at non-peak times, is intended to help Calgary Transit see the impact of allowing bikes on CTrains at all hours of operation, the city said.

It was initially set to end on March 31 of this year.

"We want to see if lifting the time restrictions for bikes on CTrains can provide more options, without negatively impacting other customers or the operations of our CTrains," Chris Jordan, the manager of Transit Service Design, said in a statement.

"Calgarians have told us that they value having options for how they get around the city, including how they access transit."

According to the city, Calgary Transit has seen a faster-than-expected return to pre-pandemic levels of CTrain ridership. Officials believe extending the pilot will give better insights into how the policy affects customers and service under what they call more typical ridership numbers.

"We want to be sure that we have solid and complete feedback about how bikes affect transit customers and operations, at all times, before we make a final decision," Jordan said.

Several additional initiatives that are meant to help integrate bikes with transit use, including installing bike racks on all buses and community shuttles, are underway and are expected to be implemented fully by the end of 2023.

The city and federal government also announced in February they are investing $4.9 million in upgrading "active transportation" infrastructure in the Beltline neighbourhood — including creating two kilometres of two-way, protected wheeling lanes along 15th Avenue S.W. between 12th Street S.W. and First Street S.E., replacing painted lanes.

The city said that Calgary Transit will continue to gather feedback from customers on the pilot project and will provide an update and a decision early in 2024.