Tag Archives: signage

No bikes on Summit Circle … path

No cycling on Summit Circle?

No cycling on Summit Circle?

A little over a month ago, I noticed a post at Berri-UQAM.ca with the title “pas de bicyclette à Westmount?” – two pictures without commentary suggesting that bicycles had been completely banned from the city.

I decided to take a look for myself. The pictures looked like they might have been taken near Summit Park, so I headed up there with my camera (“up” being the operative word, it’s quite a hike from the bus stop on Côte des Neiges). Sure enough, at the corner of Summit Circle and Oakland Avenue, a small “no bicycles” sign.

The same no bicycles sign from the other side

The same no bicycles sign from the other side

I couldn’t quite make out its intent. Is cycling banned on Summit Circle? If so, why? And why aren’t there other signs saying that? Was it put up in error?

A bit down the street, I spotted another, similar sign:

No cycling, but where?

No parking, no cycling?

Being one of those curious journalist-y types, I emailed the city of Westmount asking what this was all about. After a few days, and with a standard template for answering citizens’ questions, this email reached my inbox:

In reference to your question, the “no bicycle” sign is not meant for Summit Circle but only for the Jogging path along Summit Circle. The Jogging Path begins at the corner of Oakland and Summit Circle.

I hope that this information is helpful.


The jogging path is that dirt path you see in the second and third photos. It runs along Summit Circle on the north side of the park.

Though it makes sense to ban bikes from this narrow pedestrian path, the signage isn’t at all clear. No words, not even an arrow pointing to the path to give some indication where exactly the bicycles are forbidden. A cyclist passing by there would only look on in confusion, and perhaps go away with the impression that the summit neighbourhood of Westmount is filled with rich, bicycle-hating luxury SUV drivers who want to exclude those who don’t fit on their better-than-thou pedestal.

Because that impression would be false, right?

When is a dépanneur not a dépanneur?

After road work is done on Decarie Blvd. in Saint-Laurent, the borough is planning to start enforcing its by-laws on commercial signage. The law is pretty sensible, with a moderate restriction, a three-year grace period, and even some help funding new signs. That, plus the consultation and negotiation it went through with local business owners prior to enforcement makes it pretty ideal.

But the law has one additional restriction: No signs, posters or neon lights in windows. For most stores this is preferable to give it a more classy look, but what about dépanneurs?

Dépanneur window signage has gotten so ubiquitous in Quebec that the easiest way to spot them tends to be a hand-made sign in the window saying how cheap a case of Molson Dry beer is. (The linked article contains one such example.)

Can the Saint-Laurent borough really bring class to its corner stores? And what will that make them look like?