Winter Cycling Conditions Survey

2020 Winter

Thanks to 319 Winnipeggers for responding to our online survey about cycling conditions in the city this winter.

63% of them biked less this winter than in past years:

Of those who rode less:

  • 6% changed their travel pattern due to COVID, including working from home.
  • 76% experienced impassible bike lanes, and too narrow lanes with icy ruts for safe riding on the roadway.
  • 2% injured themselves falling off their bike due to bad clearing.

Here are examples of what they said:

  • I typically bike to work 5 days a week. In February the ice pack was so thick and slick I had a bad fall on a side road (with studded tires) and had to stop all exercise for 6 weeks
  • The bicycle routes were not cleared properly or in some cases, not at all. The roads were poorly plowed, where most roads were missing at least half a lane, making it especially dangerous to be on the roads.
  • I biked more *despite* awful conditions. Conditions of bike path were *always* worse than roadway.
  • Poor snow clearing on residential streets and on bike routes/paths made it unsafe. Icy ruts, narrowed lanes…
  • The conditions were absolutely terrible. Bike paths weren’t properly cleared and neither were the roads (or sidewalks!) so I didn’t feel like I was safe anywhere
  • The paths weren’t clear. The streets were crowded, slippery and unsafe. I found myself at dead ends where I had to get off and push my bike. I had no way of knowing what my route would be like on a given day, so was stressed about making it to work on time.
  • Awful snow clearing and couldn’t even walk on sidewalks. Even this spring it is impassable at Omand’s creek with snow/slush half a foot deep. No motorist would accept this.
  • Horrible snow clearing for bike lanes (and sidewalks for pedestrians). It seemed way worse than previous years with junk and snow seemingly to almost be purposefully put in bike lanes and sidewalks.
  • The snow clearing was terrible.  Cars seem to get all the priority.  I was forced to cycle on the road a lot as bike paths were unusable
  • I always bike year round but this one was rough. Not helpful when snow ploughs pile snow INTO bike lanes and do not clear side streets
  • I’ve been winter cycling for 10+ years, and this was the worst I’ve seen the roads and AT routes. It’s making it very difficult to continue living without a car.

We will present the feedback to City officials, and send each councilor comments from people who live in their wards, so they understand what their constituents experienced when they cycled this winter.