Further to 1 in 7 kelowna residents commutes by bike

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At the end of February 2008 Karen Cairns of the City told me that Jerry Dombowsky would respond to my queries about the above claim – see previous posts. I have forwarded the following email to see if I can drum up a response.

***********************************************

Karen:

As you may recall I contacted you at the end of February regarding the
above noted claim made in the City publication – “City of Kelowna
Sustainability 2008”. You pointed me to a study done last year by
Synovate. I responded that the study indicated a rather lower rate (in
the area of 2% in May 2007) and that that was a far cry from 1 in 7
(14.28%).

On the 2nd of March 2008, you indicated that Jerry Dombowski would be following this up. Despite contacting Jerry Dombowski by email on the 9th of March I have not had a response.

You may wonder why I would care about these figures. The City puts an
extremely positive spin on all of it’s activities saying that we are
“sustainable” – a word that now has little meaning. Unfortunately I
suppose that is to be expected. It does however confuse people who
don’t really know what sustainable is (many of our citizens) and it
gives the majority lots of excuses as to why they should not change
their ways. After all if our City is a leader in sustainability why
should we be expected to do more. We can continue on our merry way with no thought to the effects on environment, climate or our children.

Claims such as this argue that there is little need for further cycling
infrastructure – that the City of Kelowna can now relax as they have
such great cycling facilities and programs that little more must be
done.

A couple of very glaring inconsistencies arise here – students at UBCO
cannot safely and legally ride to and from downtown Kelowna to the
campus. People commuting to and from LakeCountry take their life in
their hands trying to ride to Kelowna on either Hwy 97 or Glenmore Road; commuting just isn’t safe even though the City’s boundaries extend well into LakeCountry. Many roads with bike lanes (Glenmore, Spall, Springfield and many more) are becoming so busy that the existing cycling infrastructure is no longer adequate and safe. I could go on.

I would appreciate an answer to my queries. If this is a mistake on the
part of the City then admit it and get on with life. If it can be
justified then let me know and I will trumpet to the heavens that
Kelowna has the highest percentage of trips by bicycle in North America and that we are rivalling many European cities in this regard.

Thank you,

**************************************************
John.

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