ByWard Market – Somerset Street East Neighbourhood Bikeway

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Project status

Project overview

The functional design is underway for an improved cycling connection within Ward 12 - Rideau-Vanier. This Project aims to improve connectivity between the ByWard Market and the neighbourhoods of Lowertown and Sandy Hill, including to Cross-town Bikeway #3 along Somerset Street East.

A key map has been provided of the project area.

ByWard Market-Somerset bike lane study area


Since 2011, the City has made progress with implementing Cross-Town Bikeway #2 and #3 which provide for connectivity into the downtown core along Laurier Avenue West. To supplement these routes and better accommodate local trips within Rideau-Vanier ward, staff are exploring opportunities to better connect the neighbourhoods of ByWard Market, Lowertown and Sandy Hill by bicycle.

The ByWard Market is a popular destination; however, it is currently difficult to reach by bicycle. King Edward Avenue is a significant barrier to active transportation in getting to and from the Market, with limited opportunities to cross. York Street, identified in the 2013 Ottawa Cycling Plan as a Local Route, does not permit residents to cross King Edward Avenue on a bicycle without dismounting and using the crosswalk. However, the signalized intersection at this location is one of the few along King Edward Avenue that is not an arterial road, and as such the streets along either side are more comfortable for residents using active transportation.

At other locations within the study area there are elements that do provide a benefit to cyclists at those specific locations, such as the bicycle-only cut-throughs at Nelson Street and Besserer Street, and minor traffic calming measures such as ‘bulb-outs’ at certain intersections. However, there is no coordinated route connecting these neighbourhoods that prioritizes travel by bike.

Through the redevelopment of properties at 151 and 153 Chapel Street, the City has the opportunity to fund a number of public benefits in the area, including improvements to cycling infrastructure. It is intended that these improvements will focus on creating a neighbourhood bikeway route between the ByWard Market, Lowertown and Sandy Hill, including addressing the intersection of York Street and King Edward Avenue to permit east-west crossings.

Facility overview

York Street and King Edward Avenue

Modifications to the intersection of York Street and King Edward Avenue are proposed that will permit bicycles to cross King Edward Avenue in both directions along York Street, while continuing to restrict other vehicles.

Neighbourhood Bikeway

A neighbourhood bikeway facility is intended to increase the priority of bicycle travel along a route using a combination of bike priority and traffic calming measures to maintain low volumes and speeds of motorized vehicles. The document below provides further background on the neighbourhood bikeway concept, the route options being considered and the types of measures that might be implemented.

Later in 2022 staff will review the feedback received regarding the different route options and propose further bike priority and traffic calming measures to for the remaining segments of the corridor.

Online Consultation (April 2022)

Date and time

Fri, Apr 15 2022, 8:00am to Sun, May 15 2022, 5:00pm

Councillor Fleury will be hosting a virtual consultation session on April 27, 6:30 to 8 p.m. Please register for Zoom.

Public feedback is an important component to assist the City in designing the neighbourhood bikeway route. We encourage interested members of the public to review (1) the neighbourhood bikeway presentation information, and (2) the draft functional design for the intersection of York Street and King Edward Avenue. Feedback can be provided through the online survey until May 15, 2022.

York Street and King Edward Avenue Draft Functional Design

York Street and King Edward Avenue Draft Functional Design

A – Intersection modifications to allow two-way east-west bike travel through the intersection

B – Shared-use lane markings and potential traffic calming measures along York Street

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa. If you require special accommodation, please call or email the City of Ottawa Project Manager to provide your feedback.


Sam Roberts, Transportation Planner – Cycling
613-580-2424 ext. 27910