The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is urging Windsor residents to support segregated bike lanes proposed for a stretch of Cabana Road.

"Ensure Cabana Road and the Windsor Loop are done right. Contact your city councillor today," a statement on the health unit's website reads.

The Windsor Loop is a 42.5-km circular loop of connected bike-friendly paths, trails and roads.

Councillors were supposed to vote on the Cabana bike lane plan, which would run roughly 5.5 kilometres from Northway Avenue to Walker Road, on July 7.

The estimated cost of the project is close to $4.3 million, plus tax. The total would be more than $4.8 after tax.

"Cycling is a healthy, safe, and efficient way to get around the city," the health unit's statement says. "[Cabana Road] is a major thoroughfare and deserves the additional safety of separated bike lanes."

The City of Windsor will hold a public meeting Thursday night to discuss segregated bike lanes on Cabana Road.
City staff recommends the segregated lanes.

In a report tabled before council July, staff said the separate bike lanes are "a vital link in the completion of the Windsor Loop."

A conventional bike lane is about 1.5 metres wide but only a painted line divides it from the traffic lane. Separated bike lanes use a concrete buffer or bollards, short posts, to diver traffic from the bike lane.

The city estimates it will cost an additional $8,800 annually to keep the separated bike paths clear of snow.

The City of Ottawa installed some segregated bike lanes in 2011.

The city said in a news release last year that the concrete curbs keeping cyclists and drivers apart has resulted in fewer collisions and near-collisions while tripling the number of cyclists travelling along the Laurier Avenue route to more than 716,000.

Ottawa also said emergency vehicle response times have not been affected since they were officially opened in July 2011.

Windsor city council elected to have one more public meeting on the Cabana Road proposal after one woman living on the street asked for a deferral at the July 7 council meeting.