Bob Hawkins (incumbent)
Thank you, Bike Regina, for raising the issue of urban cycling during our current municipal campaign. Your advocacy now, and before Council during many of the meetings at which I have been a councillor, has been effective and has helped us make better policy. There is an important place for cycling in our transportation planning and now is the right time to make the decisions that will build protected bicycle infrastructure into our transportation planning, something which has not been sufficiently considered in earlier planning.
Bike Regina made key submissions during the processes leading to the development of Regina’s new Official City Plan. That plan reflects your input. It calls for the development of, “an inviting and efficient citywide bikeway network to expand on-street and off-street cycling infrastructure to connect key trip generators and destinations,” and for, “streets, pedestrian paths and bike paths that contribute to a network of fully connected, safe and accessible route to all destinations.” I voted in favour of the adoption of the new Official City Plan and am committed to realising the provisions that I have just quoted. In short, I would like to see an integrated bikeway system that would facilitate cycling anywhere in the city.
Bicycling safety is a key priority for me. I do not think that bikes and cars mix easily on our roads. That is why I feel we should make a strong effort to create separate bike lanes from traffic protected by cement dividers where possible or even better, lanes entirely separate from vehicular traffic. New federal government infrastructure monies can help with this but it must also be an important consideration as we are rebuilding our streets, something which will become more frequent given the City’s ageing infrastructure, and as we are building new transportation corridors in new subdivisions.
The city also has a role to play in educating motorists and cyclist in safe road usage.
I also want to mention, again emphasising safety, the importance of wearing bike helmets. We owe that to our friends and our families. It is important for parents to insist that their children wear proper protective head gear. Our brain is precious, it will not grow back, and we should take great care not to injure it.
I am committed to a complete and connected system of bike paths and to safe biking. I would be happy to answer any other questions that you might have.
First, Regina should be designated as a “bike-friendly” city in its advertising and marketing campaigns. Additionally, existing bike riding paths should be advertised on its website and homepage. All future road repayment should be mandated to include a bike path as part of the overall design. The entire city roadways should be optimally connected by continuous bike-paths since bikes are an alternative means of transportation for many residents, year round.
Regina would do well to adopt tag line that reinforces the message that promoting healthy environment is one of its main goals. Under that stated goal, activities such as bike-riding should be promoted.Everyone knows that there are many positive health benefits for the environment and citizens when the number of bike-riders increases. Motorists also need to understand the bike-riders’ rules-of-the road as the best way to protect riders’ safety.
The importance of creating sustainable and livable communities can best be served bye promoting a healthy environment for our citizens and encouraging outdoor physical activities whenever possible. Bike-riding is the perfect union because it markedly reduces pollution and traffic congestion and promotes enhanced physical fitness. Regina must do everything possible to facilitate the safety and convenience of bike-riders.
I enjoy all types of outdoor activities including bike-riding. The experience of being outdoors with the freedom to go wherever you wish is very appealing to me and my daughters. Given the new types of adult bikes available, anyone at any age can now die a bike and benefit from the experience
Thank you for your questions.
I’d like to answer the first two with one statement. I totally support cycling as part of an overall transportation improvement strategy for the city. I am not exceptionally well-versed at this time on the ideas your organization has provided to improve conditions for cycling in Regina, but will certainly spend the time in the very near future to find that out. I would support additional bicycle-only lanes and other strategies to encourage this as a healthy and logical option to vehicle traffic.
I usually only ride my bike on the bike path as I don’t trust drivers to be courteous especially in heavier traffic. This too needs to be addressed.
I hope this meets your needs.