Leading up to the 2022 municipal election, CycleWR volunteers have been taking municipal electoral candidates for bike rides to show off the best and worst of the cycling infrastructure in their ward/city/region. For a full list of completed rides, click here. CycleWR is a non-partisan organization that does not support any particular party or candidate. Summaries are written by volunteers or candidates and may not reflect the mandate or views of CycleWR. For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CycleWR volunteers Lynn Dramnitzki and her husband took Joe Gowing, candidate for Regional Council, Kitchener, out for a walk. Here’s what they had to say about the walk:
Thanks to CycleWR, my husband Jon and I were able to go for a walk with Joe Gowing, one of the Kitchener candidates for Regional Council.
We met at the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium and walked up Ottawa Street North to the pass-through at Archer Place. From there we walked down Archer Place to the Expressway Trail, then along Krug Street to Dumfries Avenue, and along Dumfries to the Auditorium.
Along the way we showed Joe the separated bike lanes that the Region of Waterloo installed last year along Ottawa Street North. We were able to explain to him the problems that the lack of connectivity between those bike lanes and the cycling infrastructure that starts just before Nottingham on the opposite side of the Ottawa Street bridge creates, not only for cyclists and pedestrians, but also for the cars, trucks, and busses that use this very busy stretch of Ottawa Street.
We discussed how poor winter maintenance of cycling infrastructure and sidewalks is a real barrier to active transportation and to transit use, particularly along streets like Ottawa. The lack of good winter maintenance also poses a huge accessibility barrier for seniors and disabled people. We also talked about how the City and the Region could work together to make busy arterial roads such as Ottawa Street work for all road and sidewalk users.
Joe is advocating for better and free transit service for all. We traded ideas about planning better transit, and how active transportation is critical to any transit plan. The Kitchener Memorial Auditorium is a good example. At this time, “The Aud” has almost no good options for people who want to access the property by any means other than a motor vehicle. If the Region and the City of Kitchener could work together improve access to the property for those using transit, walking, or cycling to an event, more people might consider using these options.