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Kelowna wants to boost walking and cycling

A woman cycles on the Rail Trail multi-use path near Spall Road.
June 23, 2015 - 10:30 AM

KELOWNA - A push to get more residents making trips on foot or on a bike will be enshrined in a pedestrian and bicycle master plan after city council endorsed a staff proposal this week.

In a report to council, transportation manager Moudud Hasan says the goal is to leverage the increases already achieved since 2007 — locals made 11.1 per cent of all trips in 2013 compared to eight per cent back then — by pulling together all the city’s alternative transportation initiatives into on comprehensive plan.

“This plan will establish a comprehensive strategy to increase walking and cycling as alternative measures. The plan will support the official community plan and community climate action plan goals of providing sustainable transportation options and reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Hasan says in the report.

An implementation strategy has already been drafted and staff have completed an inventory of walking and cycling facilities, made an assessment of their condition as well as identifed gaps in the network using GIS mapping.

Going forward, the plan will recommend policy and bylaw updates based on best practices identified in other communities plus priortize projects based on the current active transportation budget.

Hasan notes in his report the plan is not financially achievable based on current funding levels. A total of $53 million is available for active transportation in the city’s 2020 capital plan, but actual spending has not kept up with planned spending.

Kelowna currently has 400 kilometres of sidewalks and walkways plus 300 km of on-road bike lanes and an additional 30 km of off-road pathways.

To contact the reporter for this story, email John McDonald at jmcdonald@infonews.ca or call 250-808-0143. To contact the editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015
InfoTel News Ltd

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