I’ve been waiting a lot of years for Regina to have a plan that includes more bicycle infrastructure. Now you have the opportunity to improve the safety and convenience of Regina for people moving around it.
Two years ago, Councillor Young was quoted in the Leader-Post about the Transportation Master Plan (TMP):
“We’re hoping we get to talk about it early in 2016 and then we’ll bring it forward for the 2017 budget,” said Coun. Barbara Young, who chairs the public works committee.
She also said the reason for the delay is the expansiveness of the TMP.
“We need time to take it apart and ask how it was done, what was the methodology and who have you consulted with?” Young added. “We aren’t ready to take it public. We need more information.”
A majority of Council was not here in 2011. I was, as a member of the public and as the President of a corporate stakeholder, actively involved in Design Regina and then TMP planning meetings. I hope you’ll consider my insight into the plan.
We each have our own vision for what Regina can be. Some want smarter cars, others want safe cycling infrastructure, some great Transit, and others are pleased with how things are now and want nothing to change. That last option is the worst, and must not be permitted by this Council if Regina is to be successful at growing. I often hear members of Council expressing their desire to see Regina grow, yet the voting tends toward policies that keep the status quo. Regina now favours automobile traffic over active, healthy, happy people. 8 out of 10 people in Regina go to work in a private car. Regina cannot grow as laid out in the Official Community Plan, if 8 out of 10 people use cars as their primary mode of transportation.
Young people want to move to Regina, or stay here, if their quality of life will be better than it is in Toronto, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, or Assiniboia. If we offer them traffic jams, parking tickets, no commuter cycling infrastructure, and mediocre bus service, will they choose ‘here’, over ‘there’? Regina is presently poised to miss the boat. The TMP moves us toward catching it before it sails.
Here’s a short list of problems I think the TMP might help fix in the near future:
-soaring bus fares
-the loss of regular bus service to Saskatoon and most Saskatchewan cities
-no bicycle infrastructure installed during sidewalk and road repaving happening today on Broad St. and elsewhere.
-lacking evening and weekend Express bus routes.
Support the TMP and with it, the review of antiquated bylaws intended for an outdated and now harmful reality of a bygone century.