The Candidates Respond: CYCLING

All candidates for Cobourg Council were invited to present responses to important environmental and sustainability questions issued to them by Sustainable Cobourg. Their responses have been received and published below.

Question
For too long our cities and towns have been designed for and dominated by automobile usage, creating issues related to pollution, global warming, sedentary lifestyle, and accessibility. Bike culture has re-emerged as a positive solution, but is stymied by the current design of our roads and transportation system. Numerous cities and towns in Ontario have created or are in the process of creating Master Cycling Plans. The County of Northumberland has embarked on a Master Cycling Plan study.

If elected to Cobourg Council, what will you do to ensure that the planning, construction, and re-construction of Cobourg’s roads and pathways will encourage and be safe and efficient for bicycles?

Gil Brocanier
We will, wherever possible, connect some of our bike lanes that currently are disconnected. We will investigate the potential for bike lanes on some of our existing streets such as King St East. We will investigate the potential for bike lanes on any roads that undergo reconstruction or new roads that are created for new development. Since some of our roads are actually a County responsibility, as Mayor I will take this same message to the County. I will support the development of a Master Cycling Plan that will be the guideline for future development as I think it is important to our residents but also part of economic development if we want to see Cobourg as a cycling destination. Longer term, we must promote “active transportation” in our Integrated Community Sustainability Plan.

Stan Frost
I think the Town of Cobourg has made it quite clear through recent action that it supports the development of bicycle paths as an integral part of our roads system. As a member of the next council I will certainly support this policy wherever practical and affordable.

Dave Glover
First, I would insist on a review of current planned pathways and roadways to determine the safety factor for both cyclists and pedestrians.

We must discourage the use of motor vehicles where we can and encourage more development of pedestrian and cyclist friendly pathways and roadways through out our entire town.

John Henderson
I would support the development of a Master Cycling Plan for Cobourg. It is important that our plan be integrated with the master plan being developed presently by Northumberland County. It makes sense to incorporate this plan into the town’s long-term transportation study, VIA Rail’s bike program, as well as in the development of all new and updated neighbourhood concept plans. Seeking input from the Bicycle Ad-Hoc or Advisory Committee, Cobourg Cycling Club, Ganaraska Freewheelers, local citizens and emulating best cycling practices as demonstrated within Quebec’s La Route Vert would assist us in ensuring that our plan remains progressive.

Bill MacDonald
The town has an overall cycling plan as part of the just-completed Official Plan. The reconstruction of Ontario St. and the soon to be completed D’Arcy St. have seen bicycle lanes. The current transportation study includes a section on active/sustainable transport modes including bicycles. Any Master Cycling Plan for Cobourg must be in conjunction with a County Master Plan. The County has just created a committee with Cobourg representation to work on this project and I believe that these two concepts can be integrated with each other.

Miriam Mutton
I support the development of a Master Cycling Plan for Cobourg and would require that this Master Plan be included in the Transportation Study (Review) which is currently underway. It can also be a separate study but acknowledged within the Transportation Study as a companion report integral to the reading of the main study. It is important that cycling in Cobourg be viewed as a component to a larger system within the County and with connections to neighbouring municipalities.

I believe that we need a two bicycle path system, namely one on streets and another system through public parks and natural greenlands. Both systems would connect and have trail heads eg. bus and train stations, and, supporting infrastructure such as bicycle parking facilities.

Martin Partridge
I cycle regularly. Cobourg deserves some credit for its bike path initiatives but obviously we have ended up with a chopped up set of routes to nowhere. I completely support the development of a Master Cycling Plan. It absolutely should be part of transportation planning. With its relatively flat terrain, Cobourg is an ideal place to encourage cycling. Cycling has health benefits, obvious environmental benefits with reduced emphasis on cars and other motorized transportation, and economic and tourism benefits. I would like to see a complete waterfront path from one end of the town to the other. I would like existing pieces of path connected. I would particularly like to see a King Street West path extending all the way to Pebble Beach.

Forrest Rowden
Cycling is one of the recreations that I love to do. I have in the past worked with the waterfront trail to promote a trail from Cobourg to Port Hope that would get the bike trail away from busy County Road #2, that is a very long term plan. I hope the county will be involved so as development or construction of that road is planned to accommodate safer biking. I would like to see the master plan at the county level include all of Cobourg so duplication in the planning process will not happen. The county already has main roads within the town of Cobourg and in every municipality. They could work together with a committee that is concerned with biking, walking, general concerns for the traffic in the future. I would help in any way possible to acquire funding from our governments. They are promoting healthy living and this should fit into their agenda. A master plan for the whole area will not only help our local residents but will bring in much needed tourism dollars. 


Manfred Schumann
The prevailing perception at this time is one of a re-emergence of a bicycle-centered option for personal transportation and recreation. I don’t believe that we’ll see throngs of bicycles plugging our roads and intersections as we see in some parts of the world, but they will certainly remain evident day in day out.

As an aside here, I point to the global economic catastrophe that was recently averted apparently only because of the resurgence of consumer interest in the automobile. That reality bears a great deal of significance in these discussions.

I think it’s safe to conclude that bicycles are an important factor in planning transportation links at all levels, from local roads and paths to major highways short of the 400 series. That’s not to say that bicycles have their place in every instance just as vehicles or pedestrians must be restricted from certain places, because of infrastructure and associated safety concerns that are already in place. “De-construction” as you put it can provide the opportunity to revise the character of any existing transportation avenue at that time.

Whether or not I am elected, I support the creation of a master plan for alternative transportation avenues, including bicycles. That’s what moving people and letting people move about is all about, and a community is about people. A master plan for non-vehicular transportation is a given.

Because of its likelihood of being extremely complex and the variety of uses it will address, such a master plan has to enjoy some level of independence from the Transportation Review to permit more detailed and frequent reviews than the Transportation Review would provide. However, it must be an integral part of the review whenever it does occur.

Larry Sherwin
If elected I would like to see that any new street or reconstruction of streets be mandated to include bicycle paths.

Donna Todd
I support the inclusion of the Master Cycling Plan for Cobourg. Presently there are bike lanes that don’t provide adequate, safe cycling routes. And there is the bike lane along Elgin Street that simply disappears. The traffic calming bump outs are a cyclists and drivers worst nightmare.

If elected to Cobourg Council, will you support the development of a Master Cycling Plan for Cobourg?

Gil Brocanier
Yes

Stan Frost
See answer above.

Dave Glover
I would definitely support the development of a Master Cycling Plan for the Town of Cobourg and encourage that such a plan be part of any transportation review conducted by the town.

John Henderson
See answer above.

Bill MacDonald
See answer above.

Miriam Mutton
See answer above.

Martin Partridge
See answer above.

Forrest Rowden
See answer above.

Manfred Schumann
See answer above.

Larry Sherwin
Yes.

Donna Todd
See answer above.

Can the development of this Master Cycling Plan be included in the Transportation Review the Town will be conducting shortly?

Gil Brocanier
Yes

Stan Frost
Cycling is already included in the scope of the Transportation Study as well as pedestrian walkways and public transit.

Dave Glover
See answer above.

John Henderson
See answer above.

Bill MacDonald
See answer above.

Miriam Mutton
See answer above.

Martin Partridge
See answer above.

Forrest Rowden
See answer above.

Manfred Schumann
See answer above.

Larry Sherwin
Yes.

Donna Todd
See answer above.

About Sustainable Cobourg

Sustainable Cobourg is a citizens group in Cobourg, Ontario who advocate for more sustainable ways of living by organizing local environmental projects, educating and increasing the public's understanding of the environment and its importance.
This entry was posted in Bicycle Culture, News 2010, Sustainable Planning and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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