Just as quietly as the new MUP along the Confederation line between Ottawa U and Lees opened, the more northern section along the Confederation line from Laurier to Ottawa U opened with any fanfare too.
Councillor Fleury had mentioned to me already in early spring that the pathway would be extended to Laurier and when I was recently in the area, I thought I should drop by and see if it had opened. Low and behold, there is a nice paved path now.
Let’s have a look. We’ll start cycling on Waller Street South from Laurier Ave in a southern direction towards Ottawa U station.
It starts just before the Conferation line tunnel comes above ground. You can see the pavement isn’t great, as remnants from the Transitway and likely abused by construction traffic. But it soon improves. There is a freshly paved pathway, passing Simard Hall. The former staging area is now (back to?) a parking lot.
Next, you’ll pass five other university buildings, the newer one the Faculty of Social Sciences Library. I thought the sign reminding everyone to share the pathway is much better than the irritating ‘walk your bike’ signs.
Shared space at Confederation Pathway
Before you know it, you are already at the Ottawa U station plaza. I think many people don’t really realise it as it works just fine, but shared spaces where cycling and pedestrians mix are fairly new in our city. We love our lines and curbs and flexiposts, but the spaces at the stations are a departure from separate pedestrian and cycling space.
Another example is at Hurdman where the space underneath the tracks is an open space where cycling and pedestrians mix. Shared spaces are already very common in Europe and I am happy to see the city is implementing it here too more and more. What causes a stir at Sparks Street and the Byward Market every time you bring up mixing cycling and pedestrians, is happening just fine in other areas.
The entire stretch of the Confederation pathway from Laurier Ave to Hurdman is now 2.4 km (8 minutes by bike) and to the Tremblay Via Rail station only 3.8 km (12 minutes by bike). Read extensive coverage of the second leg going further south to Hurdman here.