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Week in review: November 27, 2017

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Consultations, feedback, and events

Transit

Despite Regional staff taking more time to consider additional route options and hold more public input sessions, some Preston residents are making the claim that the Region isn’t listening to their concerns over the staff-preferred alignment on Moore and Eagle Streets. On that note, a worthwhile read is a new blog post from transit planning expert Jarret Walker, on what it means for transit agencies to listen.

The Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario has unveiled their 2018 election platform. Toronto transit advocate Steve Munro breaks down what the platform has in store for transportation, including taking over the Toronto subway  system. Closer to home, it looks like the Tories would complete the Environmental Assessment for high speed rail, but don’t exactly say if they’ll build it. They also promise to “fulfill  existing commitments to two-way all-day GO train service,” but it’s unclear as to whether that includes the full Kitchener Line and the Missing Link.

  • GRT rolls out buses with driver shields (The Record)
  • Wilmot promises another year of funding to keep Route 77 rolling (The Record)
  • A look at speed gains on the King Street transit pilot project (SAUSy Lab)
  • Bus lanes are the new parking lanes (Streetsblog)

Cycling

  • Bike racks make return to downtown Kitchener after outcry (CBC)
  • ‘The sole reason why I am still cycling’: Newbie winter bikers praise downtown bike grid (Metro News)
  • Proper promotion helps shape a bike culture (Brand Urban Agency)
  • Three ways Austin is doubling the rate it builds bike routes (People for Bikes)

Vision Zero

Wellesley adopts a new policy for traffic calming with speed bumps: to be considered, a road needs to see least 500 cars a day, with 85% exceeding the speed limit by 15 km/h. On top of that, 50% of nearby residents need to respond to a survey, with 50% of those being in favour of the changes. If only changes to make a road more dangerous for vulnerable road users, like widening or adding lanes, or widening corners, required such an onerous process, we might not need speed bumps in the first place.

  • Exactly when does driving become a criminal action? (The Star)
  • For too long we have accepted that a certain about of killing and maiming on our streets is normal (The Star)
  • Pedestrian safety should be a priority (Deutschmann Law)
  • Pedestrian hit moments after receiving safety reflector from police (BC Local News)
  • Toronto’s Vision Zero and the folly of Seniors Safety Zones (Sean Marshall)

Land use

A station area plan has been proposed for the Rockway area. The plan would see denser developments around the Borden and Mill stations, along with the former Schneider plant, and would open up and naturalize the Schneider Creek floodplain, along which runs the Iron Horse Trail. Borden Ave and Kent Ave would become active transportation corridors, along with a couple of new trails to fill out a grid. The plan goes to Kitchener’s Planning and Strategic Initiatives Committee on December 4.

  • Market is shifting to higher-density housing (The Record)
  • Guidelines will help Kitchener grow up with style (The Record)
  • Parking with limits (Strong Towns)
  • Mapping the effects of parking minimums (Strong Towns)
  • 4 things to do with unused parking lots (Strong Towns)
  • Why parking minimums almost destroyed my hometown, and how we repealed them (Strong Towns)

The road ahead

  • Driverless cars won’t save us (CityLab)
  • Lost in the razzle-dazzle of driverless cars: they don’t solve congestion problems (Globe and Mail)
  • To understand the future of cities, watch the curb. Yeah, the curb. (Wired)

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