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Consultations and feedback deadlines
- REGIONAL BUDGET:
- Engage Waterloo Region budget survey, due Dec 21
- Public input meeting, December 14
- PROVINCIAL BUDGET: Submit and vote on project proposals by December 11
- MOVING FORWARD:
- Cycling solutions for Lexington across Highway 85, December 12
- MAPS: Regional cycling map, first edition in need of feedback
Walking in a winter not so wonderland
- Following staff advice, Kitchener council votes unanimously against pursuing winter sidewalk plowing in 2017.
- Record columnist Luisa D’Amato decries the decision, calling safe sidewalks “a human right we can’t afford to ignore.” Meanwhile, the Record’s editorial board, despite calling the projected $26/household cost a “bargain,” applauds council for penny-pinching.
- TriTAG questions the Kitchener report’s dependence on complaints to measure the effectiveness of the sidewalk shovelling bylaw. As a result, we’re developing new metrics, with which we’d like to measure the state of mobility and safety on our sidewalks this winter (with your help!)
- Robin Mazumder invites planners and policy makers try to navigate the cities they design on foot to find empathy for the people who must walk its streets everyday.
- The arrival of snow presents an opportunity to see to what extent space on the road is wasted by where tire tracks are and aren’t. Excess road space makes for higher traffic speeds and more dangerous pedestrian crossings.
— Brent Toderian (@BrentToderian) December 5, 2016
- The next Winter Cycling Congress, February 8-10 in Montreal, has published its program and opened registrations. Meanwhile, snowy Finland sets a national goal to increase its cycling mode share to 30% by 2030.
- Bombardier completes its new Kingston facility for building ION light rail vehicles.
- ION director Darshpreet Bhatti is leaving the Region for Metrolinx at the end of the year, which should make a much shorter commute for the Brampton resident.
- The Region wins a prestigious Brownie Award, for the host of brownfield developments ION is spurring along the transit corridor.
- The University of Waterloo administration responds to the claim that they’re acting as an impediment to connectivity between ION and the 202 iXpress, stating they have “different opinions” on where transit stops should be located. Sorry UW, but it’s not a matter of opinion, its a matter of facts on the ground: the ION stop is fixed in place.
- Transit naysayer and columnist Peter Shawn Taylor thinks driverless cars will spell the death of transit. Mr. Taylor should familiarize himself with TransitCenter’s list of key arguments of what Uber and driverless cars can’t replace and why transit is here to stay.
- Streetfilms puts out a new video showing how Vancouver got to 50% “active transit” mode share – in other words, fewer than half of all trips are by car:
- It’s been a terrible week for cars running down pedestrians in Toronto, and to add insult to injury, it seems the penalty for killing a pedestrian is just $1000, 6 months probation, and a few driving restrictions.
- Toronto is also hiring a new transportation director from Seattle, who says the car is no longer king. When will Waterloo Region have this kind of leadership?
- Impaired driving continues to plague our streets, with drugs becoming an increasing problem. Meanwhile, a columnist for the Victoria Times Colonist reminds us that freak-outs over distracted walking distract from the real dangers on the road.
- “Slow down, children at play” signs are often scoffed at for being ineffective. But Dylan Reid notes they do have a subtle impact on driver behaviour, but more importantly build support for and remind councillors of the need to build safer streets.
- While transit fares remain as high as ever, Waterloo is making two more parking lots free in Uptown.
- Meanwhile, Waterloo’s ION station area plans are getting pushback from certain developers who aren’t on board with the idea that auto-oriented land uses aren’t appropriate near light rail.
- Elsewhere, Seattle has been allowing apartments without parking to make downtown housing more affordable, leading to big modal shifts. Boston is testing surge pricing for parking to manage demand and time spent searching for parking. And Sidewalk Labs writes about how shared parking lots between multiple uses and peak use times, with the help of technology, can reduce the feeling of downtown being pitted with empty parking lots.