District looking for active transportation public input

Resident Ken Krulatski (right) fills out an Active Transportation Network Plan survey at the Canada Day pop up, where Urban Systems community engagement person Sierra Kasper-Moner (left) and transportation engineer Jasmine Smith (centre) were on hand to answer any questions residents may have had. Every resident who completes the survey will be entered into a draw to win an e-bike. The survey closes July 31. Photo Joanne Layh

Joanne Layh

The District of Peachland is encouraging residents to complete a public engagement survey to provide their input into the development of an active transportation plan for the town. Residents who complete the survey, found at peachland.ca/ATNP, will be entered into a draw that has an e-bike and some Outbound Cycle gift certificates up for grabs. 

Last year the community applied for a BC Active Transportation Grant and was successful in receiving $26,985 to develop an active transportation network plan for Peachland.

Since then district staff and a team of Urban Systems consultants have been in the process of identifying existing challenges and potential opportunities to encourage walking, bicycling, e-bikes, and other related active modes of transportation throughout the community.

The work is being undertaken with input from the Trail of the Okanagans Society.

Director of community services Cory Labrecque told council that so far they’ve visited a number of sites and developed a preliminary analysis of various parts of Peachland’s existing active transportation network, including reviewing sidewalks and bike lanes on local roads, highway crossings, traffic calming, cross walks, bike racks, and local connections to the regional trail system.

Once the plan is completed and approved by council, it will be used to help inform future updates of the Official Community Plan and Parks and Trails Master Plan, and will contain a list of recommended/prioritized potential future projects in which the district can partner with local organizations and apply for capital project grants. 

There is also a possibility that high-priority projects may be incorporated into the Peachland’s Development Cost Charges (DCC) framework.

The survey residents are being asked to complete includes questions about various aspects of active transportation modes in Peachland, including existing challenges and opportunities for safely traversing the community by foot, bicycle, e-bike, wheelchair and non-motorized watercraft.

A community mapping tool has been incorporated into the online-based survey to provide a visual way to easily identify and comment on local active transportation infrastructure challenges and opportunities.

The survey was promoted at a pop-up engagement booth on Canada Day with Urban Systems and again on July 2 with Trail of the Okanagans, which also offered people an opportunity to try out e-bikes.

“The Mayor’s Task Force on Climate Change is very excited that this survey is going out,” said Mayor Cindy Fortin.

Results of the survey will be posted online in a “What We Heard” report, and will be reviewed by staff and the project consultant team. 

A draft Active Transportation Master Plan is expected to be presented to council for review and consideration this fall.

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