Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

What I like about walking (video)

with 2 comments

This is on Gordon Price’s blog this morning

Amazing, isn’t it, that people need to be told about this activity. Actually every trip is an interrupted walk. Just like avoiding sitting all the time is important to health, so extending the walk parts of every trip is key. Even if you just chose a more distant parking spot than the one closest to the door.

Bad parker


Written by Stephen Rees

April 10, 2013 at 9:55 am

Posted in walking

2 Responses

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  1. Stephen,
    I heard you and some of the other speakers last night at the Richmond transportation forum. Good job. I wasn’t able to stick around but noticed that the ideals everyone spoke about didn’t include developing a “just city”. As a person with a disability, 15 years of experience developing accessibility and inclusion strategies, and in the process of completing my MA in Urban Planning, it worries me when I hear no mention of 16% of the population (double that when you take into consideration a modest multiplier effect) that have a disability.

    As economic pressures mount, cities need to be strategic with their resources. It’s not that I’m against cycling or building a sense of place but when limited funds are diverted to support 1-2% of the population for what is mainly recreational cycling or “places to stop” versus fundamental problems with basic pedestrian infrastructure that allows people to get to work, market, and health appointments, I think – “here we go again”.

    There are obvious complementary agendas between what were talked about last night and the challenges I am talking about but a lack of understanding about the needs and preferences of people with disabilities leads to bad decisions. Europe is not an ideal for instance. The images shown by a number of the speakers are examples of the physical apartheid that exists in the trendy urban forms that are lauded by urban planners in North America.

    Ironically, Richmond happens to be a better model than Copenhagen or Amsterdam but this is by topographical fortune more than anything else. I hope the dialogue continues and becomes more inclusive of the entire community.

    Mike Prescott

    April 17, 2013 at 9:24 am

  2. Better Cycling Facilities Means Mobility for Everyone – Not Just Cyclists
    Disability Advocates & Seniors Support Cycling Infrastructure Improvements

    VANCOUVER, BC – Improved cycling facilities are not just for cyclists – they benefit everyone by increasing mobility, safety and accessibility. People who use power wheelchairs and mobility scooters have seen real everyday benefits in accessibility from new bike lanes and paths in the City of Vancouver. Leaders in the disability community and seniors are voicing their support for major investment in cycling facilities across B.C via a new video: http://youtu.be/HO0elVbgouk

    The BC Cycling Coalition (BCCC) is calling for $75 million a year in provincial funding to implement comprehensive cycling improvements outlined in their Cycling Strategy for B.C. “Investing in better cycling facilities and safety education will bring widespread benefits to BC communities and all of its residents – including people with disabilities and the elderly,” said Craig Langston, vice-president of the Cerebral Palsy Association of BC.

    “I get around on a power wheelchair – it goes a lot faster than is safe on crowded sidewalks and I used to have to creep along in Downtown.” added Langston, who sits on the Disability Advisory committees for the cities of Vancouver and Burnaby, and for TransLink. “On the new separated cycle routes, I can travel at the same speed as slower cyclists and get around more efficiently. Cycle tracks are not just for cyclists or for the young and athletic.”

    “I’m 63 years old and I started riding an electric-assist bicycle three years ago. I love the freedom and mobility that it gives me, but there are plenty of areas where I still feel unsafe riding.” says Fiona Walsh, Board Member for HUB: Your Cycling Connection. “We want better cycling facilities so that everyone – from eight to eighty years old – can ride their bike and feel safe and comfortable.”

    The Cycling Strategy for BC calls for greater investment in cycling facilities, improved road user safety education for cyclists & drivers and clearer regulations in the Motor Vehicle Act around the use of cycling facilities by electric wheelchairs and mobility scooters.

    “Streets that are bike-friendly improve safety, mobility and accessibility for citizens of all ages and abilities – including families with children, pedestrians, people with mobility issues and even drivers.” says Richard Campbell, President of the BC Cycling Coalition. “This is a wise investment that benefits everyone – not just the cycling community.”

    For more information about the Cycling Strategy for B.C., visit http://bccc.bc.ca/election/.

    Stephen Rees

    April 29, 2013 at 4:36 pm


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