This evening I attended the latest Design Regina event. This one was to go through the 8 priorities identified by Council earlier this year, and highlight a few points already done well, and any barriers preventing implementation of the target priorities.
My table worked on transportation improvement. One of the positive comments was that traffic isn’t so bad… yet. We listed more bike paths (some down Arcola Ave. for instance), more High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes and accommodation (closer parking), and increased bus service in both frequency and routes. One of the key barriers to these have been Council’s unwillingness to invest a little more money in more buses and operators [to this point].
Other groups covered the other 7 priorities, and the results will be on the Design Regina website.
The comments that stuck out for me were:
– a refutation that Harbour Landing is a “complete community” or will be upon planned completion. Now, it doesn’t have: a church, a school, sidewalks between stores, library[?], fire or police station, rental housing, affordable housing, and walkability is presently laughable (or risky, depending on perspective).
– concern about nutrient pollution in Wascana Creek, fouling Pasqua Lake and water within the city also.
– concern that few First Nations people were present at the Regina Inn meeting, and some attempts to hold Design Regina meetings and invite that community to attend were not particularly successful. I think the city should hold the next large gathering in a North Central community centre to make it more geographically inviting for the people who live in that neighbourhood. There may also need to be more personal invitations given directly to First Nations citizens, by city staff organizing the events, and people who’ve been regularly attending Design Regina events.
Talking with Liz Brass, who was at my table, we’re both looking forward to helping Council see the benefits to changes proposed in the priorities, through presenting research backing the changes, among other ideas.
I’m especially excited by a route review at Regina Transit, and a likely set of changes to be voted on by next Summer. If anyone else is interested in ensuring Transit improves greatly next year, I could use your input and help with presentations to Council. Please get in touch and we’ll make sure Transit isn’t put on the back-burner again.