Idea to reduce residential speed limits gets more timeBy Bernice Pontanilla
| Metro Winnipeg
A City committee has ordered more study into a motion requesting a decrease
to 40 km/h on Winnipeg’s residential streets.
Councillors on the infrastructure renewal and public works committee voted
in favour of a 60-day extension on the motion, which was originally brought
to the July city council meeting by Coun. Harvey Smith (Daniel McIntyre)
and Coun. Ross Eadie (Mynarski).
Cycling and walking advocate Anders Swanson delivered a detailed PowerPoint
presentation to committee members, stating that in collisions between cars,
pedestrians and cyclists, speed is a huge determinant of the outcomes.
“What chance do you give people?,” Swanson said. “Pedestrians have a less
than 50% chance of surviving an impact at 45 km/h, pedestrians have almost
no chance of surviving an impact at 80 km/h.”
Swanson used pictures from his travels in Europe to demonstrate different
methods of handling traffic, be it vehicles, bikes or pedestrians.
He also showed what a street beside a Winnipeg school would look like if
these European methods were used.
Committee member Coun. Jenny Gerbasi (Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry) said
she’d like the City’s administration to do a cost benefit analysis, with
ideas on phased-in approaches or pilot projects.
This motion has no bearing on the speed limit in school zones, which is 30
Which really is more deadly: cycling or sitting down watching TV?
New scientific guidance about the 'invisible danger' of inactivity puts
cycle safety in perspective
Sometimes, it seems, to get some perspective on the vexed issue of cycling
<http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/cycling> and particularly cycle
safety you need to chat not to a transport expert, let alone a government
official, but a scientist.
This occurred to me earlier this week as I watched three fairly eminent
scientists with a specialism in public health unveil new recommendations by
the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence
<http://www.nice.org.uk/> . Our news story on it is here
vises-nice> , but in essence it calls for walking and cycling to become the
norm for short trips as a way to combat the increasingly desperate extent of
health problems connected to inactivity and obesity
After they'd introduced the report the floor was open for questions. One of
the first was on cycle safety: had they taken into account the potential
perils of riding a bike?
The answer from Dr Harry Rutter <http://www.noo.org.uk/about/NOO_team> ,
lead author of the report and an adviser at the National Obesity Observatory
- they gather data on obesity, as opposed to peering at the big-boned from a
very great distance - is worth quoting in full:
All activities carry a risk. For some reason there seems to be strong focus
on the risk of injury associated with cycling. Clearly, when deaths do takes
place that's tragic, and we need to do all we can to avoid them. But I think
there is a perception that cycling is much more dangerous than it really is.
This focus on the dangers of cycling is something to do with the visibility
of them, and the attention it's given. What we don't notice is that if you
were to spend an hour a day riding a bike rather than being sedentary and
driving a car there's a cost to that sedentary time. It's silent, it doesn't
get noticed. What we're talking about here is shifting the balance from that
invisible danger of sitting still towards the positive health benefits of
It's something most cyclists know about but it's worth reiterating. Plus, I
like the notion of an "invisible danger". People go on at exhaustive length
about the perils of cycling because cycling remains niche. Sitting around on
one's arse watching EastEnders and eating Pringles is, however, a national
pursuit, and not enough people make the connection between that and an
impact on health which is, the scientists told us, now on a par with that
In the collection of quotes assembled for the press pack there was a good
one on this point from Philip Insall, head of health for the active
transport charity Sustrans <http://www.sustrans.org.uk/> :
If a virus was this deadly it would fill the front pages and dominate debate
The second point that caught my attention came in response to a slightly
carping question from me. Such advice, I asked, is all very well but will it
really change much in the absence of concerted government action over safe
walking and cycling routes?
Professor Mike Kelly
ekelly.jsp> of Nice sighed very slightly and presented me with a parallel:
efforts to curb smoking. It took a full 60 years after the proof of
cigarettes' harm to reach the relative nirvana of a ban on smoking in public
places. View the report, he said, not as an end in itself but as "one
further accumulation of the evidence", part of a long-term process, albeit
one he hopes will take less than 60 years.
Good advice, particularly for a semi-professional cycle policy malcontent
such as me.
Perhaps the best point, however, came again from Rutter as he was asked what
more could be done to promote active travel. He replied:
There are two interventions that we know increase walking and cycling:
living in the Netherlands and living in Denmark.
Behind the half absurd statement lies this central truth: there's no magic
behind getting people on their feet or on their bikes, it just takes
sufficient political will. If the Dutch and Danish did so in the 1960s and
70s, so can we now.
[In case you haven't seen it yet:
November 27, 2012
MANITOBA SUPPORTS ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT IN RURAL
COMMUNITIES– – –
*New Active Transportation Fund Launched*
Winnipeg, Manitoba, November 27, 2012 – New Active Transportation funding
is now available to help rural communities start projects and improve local
infrastructure designed to encourage people to use alternatives to motor
Municipalities and northern communities with populations of fewer than
50,000 residents are eligible to apply to the Active Transportation Fund,
made possible by a $1-million investment from the federal Gas Tax Fund.
“This program builds on the Small Communities Transit Fund launched in
2010, making $1 million in federal Gas Tax funding available to cost-share
active transportation projects with eligible municipalities over the next
two years,” said the Honourable Ron Lemieux,Local Government Minister.
“People are becoming more health and environmentally conscious and are
switching to public transportation, bicycles and walking. As these
activities increase, people will see improved health benefits, lower
transportation costs and fewer cars and trucks on the road. Reducing
greenhouse-gas emissions is good for us and for our environment.”
“Our Government is committed to supporting infrastructure projects in
municipalities across Canada,” said the Honourable Steven Fletcher,
Minister of State (Transport) and Member of Parliament for Charleswood-St.
James-Assiniboia. “We are proud of our $1-million investment in this
program which will help municipalities across Manitoba promote
environmentally friendly transportation. The Gas Tax fund is just one of
the ways our Government is carrying out our promise to help create jobs and
stimulate economic growth across the country.”
The program provides 50 per cent cost-shared funding for eligible projects
up to a maximum of $50,000 per project. Eligible projects include:
- bike racks/lockers;
- bike paths;
- sidewalks and other pathways for pedestrian use;
- lighting and signage on trails, sidewalks and bike paths; and
- active transportation design/project plans that lead to future active
“The benefits of active transportation for Manitoba communities are wide
ranging,” said Association of Manitoba Municipalities President Doug
Dobrowolski. “This initiative will reduce pressure on our over-burdened
municipal streets and roads. The health of our citizens is also important
to local governments. That’s why active transportation options are a
win-win – they reduce costs and improve our quality of life.”
The Manitoba government is launching a dedicated active transportation
website to promote and support small communities in developing sustainable
active transportation options. The website offers Manitoba success stories;
resources and tools for municipalities, schools and community groups;
information on safety; maps of trails and pathways around the province; and
information on programs and agencies that support active transportation.
The new provincial government web address is www.gov.mb.ca/ia/index.html.
Together, all these tools and resources will help municipalities integrate
active transportation planning, design and implementation with land use and
transportation planning. Today’s commitments are part of the Manitoba
government’s three-year action plan to promote and improve active
transportation across Manitoba.
The Government of Canada’s Gas Tax Fund provides long-term funding to local
governments to help them build and revitalize public infrastructure. In
December 2011, the Government of Canada passed legislation to make the Gas
Tax Fund a permanent annual investment of $2 billion per year. Through this
fund alone, the federal government provides $66,157,000 in funding annually
for municipal infrastructure in Manitoba.
The Government of Canada has engaged provinces, territories, municipalities
and key stakeholders in a series of roundtables to guide the development of
a new long-term infrastructure plan that will support job creation,
economic growth and prosperity. To improve infrastructure across Canada
and ensure affordability and sustainability over the long term, the
Government’s new plan will encourage greater use of public-private
partnerships. This will help leverage new investments in infrastructure,
while respecting Canadian taxpayers’ ability to pay.
Lemieux noted the Action Plan on Active Transportation is part of
Manitoba’s green plan called TomorrowNow, which sets out an eight-year
strategic action plan for mobilizing Manitobans to work together to protect
the environment, while ensuring a prosperous and environmentally conscious
economy. More information can be found at:
- 30 -
For your consideration google "vulnerable road users"
From: at-network-bounces(a)lists.umanitoba.ca <at-network-bounces(a)lists.umanitoba.ca>
To: AT network <at-network(a)lists.umanitoba.ca>
Sent: Tue Nov 27 08:51:17 2012
Subject: [At-network] Green Action Centre's submission regarding proposed speed limit increases
In the spirit of sharing, here's the letter that Green Action Centre is submitting to The Highway Traffic Board regarding the proposed speed limit increases on four-lane divided roadways.
In the spirit of sharing, here's the letter that Green Action Centre is
submitting to The Highway Traffic Board regarding the proposed speed limit
increases on four-lane divided roadways.
Please find attached the policy position Bike to the Future will be
presenting to the Highway Traffic Board hearing Tuesday opposing the raising
of certain speed limits in the City of Winnipeg
We are very concerned that higher speed limits on any residential or
commercial streets would make those streets more dangerous and would put
another barrier in the way of Manitobans choosing to make short trips on
foot or by bike.
Sign up to the Bike to the Future mailing list to be part of upcoming
campaigns to push for lower speed limits and safer streets.
Oregon's innovative Scenic Bikeways program offers the very best of Oregon's scenic, historic, natural and cultural experiences - from the seat of a bike. Learn more about the Oregon Scenic Bikeways program<http://rideoregonride.com/inspiration/scenic-bikeways/>.
Oregon: The land of dreamers. And the land cyclists dream about.
The concept of the Ride Oregon site emerged from the creative energy of hundreds of cyclists who gather each year for the Oregon Bike Summit<http://www.oregonbikesummit.com/> with the goal of making Oregon the premier cycling state. The need for a site like this was identified years ago, but in 2008 the #1 recreation and tourism strategy targeted at the Summit was to develop an online epicenter for information on cycling in Oregon, to continue progress toward making our state the best place in America to ride a bike.
Travel Oregon is the agency charged with encouraging economic growth and enhancing the quality of life in Oregon by strengthening the economic impact of tourism throughout the state. The agency stepped up to the plate and brought the site to life between 2008 and 2009 with the help of a diverse and robust work group (see Partners<http://www.rideoregonride.com/partners/>) and a brilliant digital branding firm, Substance.<http://findsubstance.com/>
What you find on this site is the result of years of exploring. Years of building. And years of dreaming.
Thank you and regards
Terry Zdan BA MEDes
Policy & Service Development
Manitoba Infrastructure & Transportation
1520 215 Garry Street
Winnipeg MB R3C 3P3
P 204 945 7381
C 204 227 3724
From: Dr. Lane <dr.lane(a)shaw.ca>
To: Zdan, Terry (MIT)
Sent: Sat Nov 24 11:20:57 2012
Subject: International Transport Forum recommends 12 ways for governments to make roads safer for pedestrians
Key recommendations of the report are:
Integrate the needs of pedestrians at the earliest stages of urban planning projects and transport investments.
Establish clear administrative responsibilities at all levels of government for coordination of initiatives to promote walking.
Improve knowledge about walking: Create a standardized methodology for measuring, reporting and monitoring pedestrian mobility. Create national pedestrian observatories and encourage international comparisons.
Treat public transport services as an integrated part of the development of new urban areas. This can support a shift towards higher-density, mixed-use walking and transit-oriented urban environments.
Give more space to non-motorized traffic in city centres: Provide easy, safe, well-maintained pedestrian access to public transport and city center destinations. Develop car-free areas, discourage over-use of cars in city centres, and prevent parking on pavements and pedestrian crossings.
Develop national pedestrian planning guidance for local administrations. Plans should routinely consider the impact of projects on pedestrians and cyclists. They should also include targets for future levels of walking.
Encourage employers to create incentives for employees to walk and cycle to work.
Adopt a “safe system” approach for the design of walking environments. (The “safe system” approach recognizes that road users make mistakes and requires road design to take account of this to reduce the risk of serious injury).
Implement traffic-calming zones and generalize 30 km/h zones (19 mph) in areas with high pedestrian activity.
Introduce high-quality road safety education in schools and local community centres.
Review current traffic codes to strengthen the legal and financial protection of pedestrians.
Commission more research to better understand mobility behavior and trends.
126 Duncan Norrie Drive