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LETTER: Transit improvements should be key to city plan

From reader Josh Wapp

From a Government of Canada website, Environment and Natural Resources section: “Between 1990 and 2017, GHG emissions from the transportation sector grew by 43 per cent.”

I don’t disparage anyone for servicing their transportation needs; it’s not the point of this letter to blame people who need to live and commute. However, we need to reduce our vehicle use in this part of the world; it is harmful on many levels. I am saddened at the decision to sell off swaths of the golf course for housing developments where people can only live year-round with automobiles.

Electric vehicles are a half-measure. They are still a wasteful way to travel compared to the alternatives and do nothing to help parking and traffic congestion. We’re a decadent civilization and it is our downfall. We need to reduce consumption, above all, not just maintain (or in our case, build larger) a suburban car matrix.

I want our plans for climate action in Nelson to include improving our transit system, which has significantly increased ridership in recent years yet still has an impractical schedule for most people. We also need improved safety for bicycle riders with our traffic congestion. We are a small city with four stores selling and repairing bicycles but no bicycle lanes. We also need to preserve and repair our sidewalks instead of tearing them out if it inhibits pedestrian use.

Improving conditions for using buses, bikes, and boots should be integral to the Active Transportation Plan, Path to 2040 Sustainability Strategy, and the Low Carbon Path to 2040 – Community Energy and Emission Plan. If you agree, please voice your concerns through the city hall website, either through the climate change survey (until Feb. 7) or by contacting our climate change co-ordinator.

Josh Wapp

Nelson

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