Whitehorse to cyclists: Take your headphones off

New bylaws considered: Children could also be allowed to ride on sidewalks

Children could be allowed to ride on sidewalks

Chris Sterriah of Whitehorse says he’s nonchalant about the bylaw: On a sunny Friday we found him on the sidewalk with no helmet and earphones. To be fair, he was chatting with friends and using the bike as a seat. (Philippe Morin/CBC)
The City of Whitehorse could soon be asking cyclists to listen up: That means taking off their earbuds or headphones while in traffic. 

The city has surveyed more than 600 residents as it prepares a new bylaw package dealing with bicycles.

One reported gripe are cyclists who travel in traffic with headphones blaring.

 City bylaw manager Dave Pruden says the focus is safety.

He says the city is trying to find the right balance between bikes, pedestrians and vehicles.

Another proposed change would allow children under 12 to ride on residential sidewalks to keep them further from vehicles.

The city is also deciding whether it should drop provisions to register bikes.

"There are confilcts with cyclists and pedestrians and some with cyclists and motorists so we are trying to strike a balance," Pruden said.

The proposed bylaw isn't expected to come up for a vote until the end of summer.

City officials are asking residents to look at the proposed changes and make their final comments over the next few weeks.