Active Transportation Plan: Misplaced priorities?

Mayor and Council of Saanich

Chairman of SCAN

Re: Active Transportation
Plan; Misplaced priorities?

Currently staff are involved in preliminary discussion regarding T
of R for the above planning and public consultation project; one presentation
of which I observed and offered direct feedback. But I wish to ensure my
concerns are more widely noted in hopes of deferring this well intentioned
project to at least 2017.

Consider :

  1. Staff resources and funds are limited so major
    public review projects need to be rationed.
  2. Ongoing reviews and workload for both Council
    and staff include:  
    1. Governance
    2. Shelbourne Corridor
    3. Gyro Park 
    4. Wilkinson Rd bridge and trails
    5. Engineering
      has ongoing review of water and sewer upgrades , infiltration projects  to get ready for range of new sewerage
      treatment options 
    6. Uptown land use/
  3. During the past decade, considerable resources have
    been successfully directed toward trails, cycling, park master plans etc. With
    numerous positive results and expanded infrastructure, including key trail/greenway
    links established… the basic framework
    and key routes are now in place—i.e., Centennial Trail, Interurban,
    McKenzie .  
  4. However, regional transportation studies indicate
    that daily regional auto traffic ( estimated 1 million vehicle movements)  is and will remain the primary people mover (approx 70%), and will expand by 45,000
    vehicles per day..neither the CRD Transportation Plan nor Saanich OCP have
    dealt with issue of present arterial roads
    let alone future requirements. It is naive to think that all  intermunicipal travel can be directed to
    provincial routes and avoid municipal road links. Given the size and location
    of Saanich consider how regional residents must get to UVic, Camosun, VGH , Dockyards,Hartland
    and West Saanich Rd by traversing our municipality.  
  5. There are 2 massive capital work projects
    in the pre-planning stages now and will require major commitments from all
    of:  staff,  residents and Council. Both the liquid
    waste sewerage treatment project and
    the Mckenzie overpass will have enormous consequences for Saanich. Consider
    the impact on the Admirals, Burnside, Carey, Cuthbert Holmes park and of course
    the Goose.  Staff and funding  MUST be available to address those concerns.  

Particular to the proposed Action Plan :

Saanich has 3 other current or impending projects that
include significant consideration of cycling, walking and transit.  ie Shelbourne , Uptown and Mckenzie .
It makes more sense to complete
these assessment first and delay the ATP to 2017 rather than try to prejudge
outcomes of those regarding capital needs, priorities and to define nodes and
links to build from.  

The preamble for the ATP on pg 3 states..i) Saanich has guidelines and criteria to develop its infrastructure design
guidelines and construction priorities.
AND ii) Saanich has made great progress over the past decade in development of
infrastructure that supports Active Transportation ….

IF SO why the priority  now and allocation of such a large amount of
A budget of $325,000 is excessive given other needs.

Currently the prime priority is not more transit and cycling but
to address a backlog of traffic issues that now exist; ie: traffic flows via
Helmecken and the 5 way jam at
Interurban  and now the pending Mckenzie
overpass with its implications for Admiral, Burnside and Carey Rds.  Both construction and traffic  flows on those will impact cycling routes.

And related to Active Transportation the new Mckenzie overpass will literally
destroy links in the Goose unless major design consideration are included in
the overpass design. The project will also have significant conflict with
existing foot, cycle and traffic flows that provide access to 3 nearby schools
along Burnside. That should be the priority!!

Sadly, I am forced to conclude this proposed ATP is nice but not
necessary!!    At this time given other priorities.
In particular, staff resources and funding
for planning, impact assessment, preliminary design and public
consultation  should be diverted to both McKenzie and Governance project

James D. Anderson; November 7/15

3902 Lauder Rd

250 477 8255

Leave a Reply