Nova Scotia

Crystal Crescent Beach bike route paving project applauded by cyclists

Cyclists are welcoming a push to pave a stretch of road near Halifax that's become a popular bicycle route.

Loop formed by Old Sambro Road and Ketch Harbour Road is known as route to Crystal Crescent Beach

Cyclists and cars sometimes jockey for space on the two-lane road. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

Cyclists are welcoming a push to pave a stretch of road near Halifax that's become a popular bicycle route.

The loop formed by the Old Sambro Road and Ketch Harbour Road is well known as a route to Crystal Crescent Beach, but cars and cyclists sometimes clash for space on the two-lane road.

Local MLA Brendan Maguire drove the route earlier in the summer with the department of transportation. Department managers concluded there is enough provincially-owned space on the sides of the road to pave the shoulders. 

Mike Cogdon, the manager of the outdoor goods store Mountain Equipment Co-Op, said that would make the road much safer. 

"You always hear stories of close calls and accidents and things like that. So if we can minimize the risk, I think it's well worth doing," he said. 

Scenery by the ocean

The scenery by the ocean often draws cyclists from the Halifax area, Cogdon said. 

"It's very popular. It's quite close to the downtown core, so it's really easy to just hop on your bike even if you live downtown and ride to the loop," Cogdon said.

MEC staff organize group bicycle rides along the loop on many weekends. 

Cyclist Andrew Feenstra, who co-owns the shop Cyclesmith, said he enjoys riding the loop. 

"It's a wonderful length as well, a little less than 60 kilometres from rotary to rotary. So it's a great distance, and it's beautiful. Five kilometres out of town and you're into beautiful quiet roads, and beautiful scenery," he said. 

In a letter shared from the Department of Transportation, the transportation minister said he would request staff consider making paving half the loop a priority next year.

The remaining section of shoulder would have to be paved later. 

Feenstra says, even paving part of the route's shoulder would be useful. 

"If it's one chunk in the next fiscal year, and then in fiscal year two they're going to do the rest of it, I think the progress we're getting is fantastic," he said. 

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