Road runners spend countless hours pounding the pavement around Prince Rupert. Adequate sidewalks and crossings with good visibility are important for staying safe while running on our streets. Therefore, to help spread of the word of safe, accessible and enjoyable mobility, Complete Streets for Prince Rupert proudly co-sponsored the 2018 Cannery Road Race.
Read the our recent coverage in The Northern View: Complete Streets for Prince Rupert survey finds that Prince Rupert wants Protected bike paths
See below for our summary and link to full report.
Complete Streets for Prince Rupert conducted a survey at Seafest, 2018. The survey found that people firstly choose to drive and secondly walk downtown. People also reported that protected bicycle paths and better visibility would make it easier to walk or cycle downtown.
On a recent beautiful day, CS4PR had the honour of interviewing a local Prince Rupert legend, Curtis Bolton.
CS4PR: Hi Curtis! Please tell us about yourself.
Curtis: Hi. Curtis Bolton. Born and raised in Prince Rupert. Originally from Masset. Finished high school in ‘82. Started working roofing at 20 years old. Did roofing for 10-15 years. Now I’m a full-time bottle collector. Got hit twice by two cars. First one, split my helmet right in half and the second one... I was lucky I put it backwards or else I would have broke my nose.
CS4PR: Curtis, when did you start riding your bicycle?
Curtis: I started doing this about 15 years ago after I had a mild heart attack. And ever since then, been on the bike. Don’t drink. Don’t smoke.
CS4PR: So you started riding your bicycle for your health.
Curtis: That’s right. And now that I got grandkids, I’d like to see them all before I kick the bucket.
CS4PR: What do you think would make it easier for your grandkids to ride their bikes around?
Curtis: It’d make it easier if we had bike lanes in the city. Like Terrace. Like Vancouver. I’ve seen their bike lanes in Vancouver. They’re awesome. And the people who cross into the bike lanes, they get fined. And that’s what we need around here. For our safety, the adults' and the kids'. There’re so many kids now riding bikes, especially when the summer’s coming, eh? Ya. Other than that, I love riding. I’m healthy all my life. I played basketball, soccer.
CS4PR: What has cycling done for you?
Curtis: It has done lots. Puts food on the table for me. Pays my rent. Gives the kids money when they need it. I have four daughters all grown and I love them dearly.
CS4PR: So people see you carrying a lot of cans and bottles with your trailer. Can you tell us about that?
Curtis: Oh yeah. They stop right in the middle of traffic. They’ll honk at me, “Curtis! Do you want empties?” “Sure! I’ll take ‘em!” Every day. Seven days a week, except I guess Sunday off for resting. But I love my job. I’m a part-time roofer. Last year roofing. Be 57 this year. And I enjoy life by cycling every day.
CS4PR: Do you have a message for the people of Prince Rupert?
Curtis: Oh yes. I’d like to thank all the people of Prince Rupert for supporting me through my bottle collection and get on board. And you for making it safe for the kids and for us to ride in the city.
CS4PR: Thank you so much, Curtis!
Curtis: Thank you and have a good day!
Complete Streets for Prince Rupert is grateful for the Lions Club of Prince Rupert's generous donation of $800. We are happy that the Lions Club shares Complete Streets for Prince Rupert's goal of safer, more accessible and more enjoyable streets for everyone.
Complete streets are streets designed to be safe and accessible by people of all ages, abilities and modes of travel. This money will be used to further promote the concept of complete streets in Prince Rupert. Specifically, the money will be spent on banners, stickers and other promotional material to be shared at Seafest, 2018.
Everyone, no matter their age, ability or mode of travel, has the right to safe mobility. Cities all over North America are proving that walkable and bikable communities are healthier, happier and more prosperous.
We look forward to continuing to partner with the Lions Club of Prince Rupert for the benefit of our community.
"The Transition Prince Rupert Board is happy to announce a new partnership with Complete Streets for Prince Rupert. At least one member of Transition Prince Rupert’s Board of Directors has participated in Complete Streets since its inception, and we are now formalizing the partnership to cooperate and support each other on shared goals. This partnership will enable Complete Streets to apply for funding within Transition Prince Rupert’s organizational umbrella, and work towards improving our community’s neighbourhoods and streets."
Complete Streets for Prince Rupert members, Chris and Emma had the honour of appearing on The Northern View's weekly video podcast to discuss complete streets and the Federal government's survey, Let’s Talk Vulnerable Road Users and Heavy Vehicles Safety Measures. Other topics included an update CS4PR's Intersection Improvement Project.
Click on the image to view the podcast (The Complete Streets portion begins at 6:30 of the video.).
On March 16, 2018, the Government of Canada launched a survey titled, Let’s Talk Vulnerable Road Users and Heavy Vehicles Safety Measures. The survey is "an online public consultation to gather comments and input on strategies and preventive measures to better protect cyclists and pedestrians around heavy vehicles." Our responses are copied below.
Q1 – What information or safety measures do you feel are missing from the report?
There was no information about priority hierarchy of road users. In terms of public health promotion and safety for vulnerable road users around heavy vehicles, priority should be thus: firstly walkers, runners, cyclists, taxis & public transit, delivery vehicles, car sharing and lastly private automobiles. Where there is a conflict between safety for vulnerable road users and economic impact of limiting movement of trucks, safety for VRUs first. This hierarchy should help guide decisions.
The Moving Beyond Zero (Sweden) initiative was not addressed. "The public health and quality of life benefits of active mobility need to be given a more prominent role in the traffic safety discourse and in the socioeconomic models used for assessing infrastructure initiatives."
Q2 – What published evidence (e.g. studies, reports) would help improve this report?
Smart Growth America's report on 37 different Complete Streets project outcomes from across USA - Safer Streets, Stronger Economies
Q3 – Please provide general comments on the report and its contents
Why are there no public health representatives on the Steering Committee? It seems that only bodies that represent the interests of motor vehicles are on the Steering Committee while pedestrian and cycling advocates are relegated to the Advisory panel.
The Steering Committee, co-chaired by the Government of Alberta and Transport Canada, is comprised of individuals with decision-making authority and assembled with representatives from Transport Canada, provincial/territorial governments and jurisdictions including the Transportation Association of Canada(TAC) and Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM). The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) has also agreed to lend their assistance.
It seems Transport Canada is focusing on the safety of vulnerable road users around 'heavy' vehicles (i.e., trucks and buses) and they want to hear from YOU!
While we are happy that the Federal government announced it is committed to improving safety for pedestrians and cyclists and we are pleased that the government is considering Complete Streets as part of its plan, it would have been nice if the government had acknowledged that vulnerable road users need increased protection from automobiles in general, not just trucks and buses.
A Wheelchair in Prince Rupert
by: Emma Kivisild
People thought I was crazy for moving to Prince Rupert in a wheelchair. But here I happily am.
I haven't lived in Prince Rupert for that long – I came in the spring of 2016. We came because our daughter lives here, we could buy a house, we like the weather (!), my partner lived here as a child. And we have lots of family.
Prince Rupert is beautiful, and a delight as a place to live. So much nature! Ravens clucking, deer in the streets. Oh my, the candied salmon. Fresh fish to deep fry at home. Long summer days, like, really long summer days.
Try explaining to someone from Vancouver that you can always find parking. That it only takes five minutes to drive anywhere. That people greet you. Try telling them that the parking at the hospital is free. That when you are on a flight out, you zip downtown in five minutes, get on a bus (wheelchair accessible) and your driving is done and you will be on time.
But, that said, it could be better. Specifically, living here in a wheelchair is sometimes a chore.
First, the sidewalks. Outside of downtown they are in dismal repair, with hardly a smooth rolling surface among them. In my neighborhood, up near Pigott Place, there are actually telephone poles in the middle of the sidewalk.
Then, the hills! The stairs! Brainiacs that we are, we bought a house at the top of a hill that is too steep for a wheelchair. In town, able-bodied people take stairs from one street to another. (Don’t wear high heels!) . Houses often tower above or sit well below street level. Climb up, climb down, climb up, climb down.
It's just so hilly and the corollary is that everyone has stairs to get into their house. We were able to solve this by building a ramp at our house, but I do not expect everyone to do that. So far, I have managed parties by using a light manual chair and arriving late enough for a critical mass of party guests to be there already. Then they carry me and the chair up to the house. At the end of the party, same thing in reverse. I cannot leave too late because that critical mass must still be there. So far, I can be carried. I have an appreciation for strong people with good backs.
You would think that places like restaurants, offices, and stores would have already solved this problem for me. Well not quite. I have to thank the many people who have made accessibility something that some people think of, but… Since I have been here, my doctor's office has installed a ramp. (Hooray!) But you should weep with me for that great restaurant (or so I've heard) on the second floor. Or the magical store where I can get in at the back, but then can’t move anywhere inside. Or the dentist that I can't get to at all (There are others, thank God, including mine, where they treat you in your chair!).
I get around, though. The movie theatre has a side door. There are accessible restaurants and coffee shops. Yay for the community centre and the people who come to my house and the technology that saves me.
On February 13, 2018, City Council heard about CS4PR's intersection improvement project - a temporary demonstration of curb extensions. This was not a time for council members to vote either for or against this proposal, rather council had the opportunity to ask questions and give feedback on the concept. The next step is for CS4PR to consult with the engineering department on the proposal.