Wonderful Waterloo Archive

This site is maintained by Sam Nabi as a record of the vibrant Wonderful Waterloo community, which was taken offline in 2014. This site is a partial archive, containing some posts from 2009-2013. To read more about the recovery effort and access the data in a machine-readable format, check out the GitHub page.

Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee

Post #318
01-03-2010 05:24 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener-Waterloo Posts 1,647
WW Meet 2: Saturday May 29 4-7 PM
Pedestrian Issues in Waterloo Region

Post #319
01-03-2010 05:25 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener-Waterloo Posts 1,647
WW Meet 2: Saturday May 29 4-7 PM
Rallying call: Take back the streets from automobiles
April 21, 2008

Barry Wellar says municipalities should put pedestrians comfort ahead of driver comfort.

Barry Wellar is helping pedestrians, cyclists and transit users take back their streets.

For too long, city governments have catered to drivers of privately owned vehicles, sacrificing the safety of pedestrians and the environment, according to Wellar, professor emeritus, department of geography at the University of Ottawa.

These days, he is an expert witness in cases where people sue municipal governments after slipping and falling on sidewalks, or after pedestrians are hit by cars.

He was in Waterloo recently speaking to a citizens' group -- the Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee -- about how to get municipal governments to make cities more pedestrian-friendly.

The steering committee wants the cities of this region to implement the principles of the Pedestrian Charter, which is sort of a bill of rights for walkers and cyclists.

The charter has been adopted by Kitchener, Cambridge and Waterloo Region. The City of Waterloo is thinking about it. Other cities, such as Toronto and Ottawa, have adopted the charter.

"The walkability of a community is an indicator of the quality of life of that community," Jennifer Robertson-Wilson of the Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee, says.

And Wellar has lots of advice for improving the quality of life in our cities.

A municipality, he said, should not receive any transportation-related funds from Queen's Park or Ottawa until it has a plan for increasing walking, cycling and the use of public transit.

Climate change, increasing oil prices, traffic congestion and poor air quality will force changes on city governments and individuals.

"If walkability doesn't become a major part of transportation planning in the next 10 years, I think you are in trouble," Wellar says.

A quick look at some of the municipal budgets in this region shows there is no balance to transportation spending. Roads get the overwhelming amount of taxpayer dollars; sustainable transportation -- walking, cycling and transit -- get comparatively little.

This year, Kitchener will spend $17.2 million on roads, $1.6 million on sidewalks and $486,000 on paths and trails.

Cambridge will spend $10.3 million on roads, $225,000 on sidewalks, $204,000 for on-road bike lanes, and $35,000 for off-road trails.

In Waterloo, roads will get $6.9 million, sidewalks $254,000 and bike paths $250,000.

"Let's be honest, the vast majority of money goes into roads," Wellar says.

Waterloo Region is the only municipal government in this region that approaches balanced spending between infrastructure for roads and sustainable transportation -- at least for 2008.

Waterloo Region will spend $92.5 million this year on roads. But it will also spend $81 million on Grand River Transit. It will also spend $1.6 million to build 108 kilometres of sidewalks and bike paths.

Municipal governments must do a lot more to get people using sustainable transportation, Wellar says.

"We are talking about simul-taneously increasing walking, biking and transit and at the same time decreasing the use of the private automobile," Wellar says.

Data on sustainable transportation from the most recent census shows that pedestrian advocates have a lot of work to do when it comes to changing the behaviour of people in the cities of this region. For the first time ever, the 2005 census asked people how they get around -- driving a car, riding in a car, walking, cycling or transit.

In Cambridge, 60,560 use private vehicles, 2,190 use transit, 2,020 walk and 565 cycle.

In Kitchener, 104,750 use private vehicles, 6,445 ride buses, 4,870 walk and 1,360 ride bikes.

In Waterloo, 49,530 use vehicles while 2,270 use transit, 3,740 walk and 1,525 ride bicycles.

Such numbers don't discourage Wellar, who says cities must spend more on sustainable transportation before more people walk, ride bicycles or use transit. In short, stop treating pedestrians like third-class citizens, he says.

"If you want to encourage walking, you don't want people standing in snow, standing in slush, standing in water," Wellar says.

Wellar is scathing in his criticism of cities that do not plow sidewalks in the winter. The cities in this region plow some sidewalks in their downtowns and some public property. But city crews do not remove snow from the overwhelming majority of sidewalks and bus-stops.

"I don't believe it. Wow! It seems to me there is some money to be made here. This is shocking," Wellar says.

He testified recently in a lawsuit where a Toronto man sued the city after slipping and falling on a winter sidewalk. The man broke his knee. That case is still before the court.

Wellar was also an expert witness in a slip-and-fall case in Ottawa where a woman broke her ankle. She was awarded thousands of dollars.

"If I was going to be an expert witness at a trial I would love to do it here. If a municipality defaults snow clearing to citizens it is a recipe for disaster," Wellar says.

The cities of this region require property owners adjacent to city sidewalks to clear the snow within 24 hours after the end of a storm. Other cities, such as London and Guelph, plow all city-owned sidewalks.

Priority for snow-clearing should be transit routes and sidewalks, not roads, he says.

Municipal governments are willing to see citizens get hurt, and then make payments in slip-and-fall cases, rather than clear sidewalks of snow, Wellar says.

"That strikes me as pretty disgusting logic," Wellar says. "You have to be concerned that bean counters are calling the shots."

Over the past nine years, the cities of this region paid about $1.5 million in claims after someone slipped on a public sidewalk.

In Cambridge, the payouts totalled $192,542 since 2000. The worst year since then was 2007, when payments totalled $130,550.

In Kitchener, the payouts have totalled $1.1 million since 2000. The worst year since then was 2003 when the city paid out $205,442.

In Waterloo, the payments totalled $234,906 since 2000. The worst year since then was 2003, when the city paid out $81,578.

When it comes to treating pedestrians as third-class citizens, Wellar traces the problem to a book called the Highway Capacity Manual, Bureau of Public Roads, in the United States. A Bible of sorts for traffic engineers.

The first order of business, according to that influential tome, is the convenience, comfort and safety of drivers.

Wellar developed the walkability security index for the City of Ottawa more than 10 years ago, subverting the principles used by traffic engineers in the manual.

This was done, in part, to counter the arguments of traffic engineers at hearings of the Ontario Municipal Board -- a provincial tribunal that rules on land-use disputes.

City governments should be increasing the safety, comfort and convenience of pedestrians with every street, sidewalk, intersection, roundabout, trail, bike path and set of traffic signals, Wellar says.

Currently, traffic signals are used at intersections to ensure the smooth flow of traffic, not the safe crossing of pedestrians.

And the expansion of intersections usually spells disaster for walkers.

"What is our legal liability here?" Wellar says.

A walkability test should be applied to all transportation projects, every city's Official Plan, amendments to those plans, each application to change land use in a municipality, and site plan agreements for individual developments.

Wellar says sidewalks and pedestrian paths should be designed and constructed to serve and promote community and neighbourhood walkability.

While increasing expenditures on infrastructure for walking, biking and public transit, city governments should stop widening roads. Parking lots along King Street should be zoned out of existence and replaced with high-density housing because it is well served by public transit.

"You are not dependent on an automobile if you can walk, ride a bike or take transit. So it is a choice. It is a proclivity. It's just proclivity. It is not dependence at all," Wellar says.

The numbers
214,840 - People who rely on vehicles to get around, according to the 2005 census, in Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo.
10,905 - People who take transit in the three cities, according to the 2005 census.
3,450 - People riding bikes to get from place to place.
34.4 million - Spending in dollars on roads this year by Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo
2 million - Spending on sidewalks this year by Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo
1.5 million - Payments over nine years by the region's cities because of claims by people who slip on sidewalks.
Post #1995
02-12-2010 11:19 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener-Waterloo Posts 1,647
WW Meet 2: Saturday May 29 4-7 PM
Group seeks a pedestrian-friendly Waterloo Region
By Terry Pender, Record staff
February 11, 2010

Joyce Padington, a crossing guard at Victoria St South and West Forest Trail, tied balloons to her stop sign for Crossing Guard Appreciate Day, Wednesday.

WATERLOO REGION — A citizens’ group that aims to make the cities of this area pedestrian-friendly wants to hear from residents.

Later this month, the Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee will give a public presentation on how other cities became walkable and welcomed pedestrians. The presentation will be followed by a discussion on the next steps that are needed to make Waterloo Region more walkable.

“It is important we get feedback from the larger community,” Rob Martin, acting chair of the Pedestrian Charter Steering Group, said.

“We don’t want to tell people what they need, we want them to tell us and then we will advocate,” Martin said.

The public meeting is scheduled for Feb. 25, at 7 p.m., in the Schneider Room at the main branch of the Kitchener Public Library on Queen Street.

“For me, it’s about the desire to have a friendly, safe community and the way to do that is have people out on the streets,” Martin said.

“If people are out you get to know each other, they will talk more and visit. I think it deters crime to have more people outside,” Martin said.

Between 2005 and 2008, Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Waterloo Region adopted the Pedestrian Charter’s guiding principles to support and encourage walking.

The Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee works to have municipal governments implement the charter and make the area more walkable.

Antonio Goméz-Palacio is a leading authority on walking in cities and has a lot of advice for residents and municipal councillors in this region. Goméz-Palacio is a principal with the Toronto-based urban design and planning firm called Office for Urbanism.

Goméz-Palacio said to make the transition from a car-dependent city to a walkable city, every department at city hall must be involved.

High-density, mixed-use developments are key. Complete communities are needed where everyday needs can be satisfied within one square kilometre. Buildings should come right out to the edge of sidewalks, which are wide and shaded by trees.

Sidewalks are needed on both sides of the street and there should be crosswalks that make people feel comfortable and safe.

Such streets become destinations and can be viewed as part of the city’s collection of open spaces, Goméz-Palacio, said.

“If it is a beautiful, gorgeous street you will want to walk it, you will want to congregate and linger and meet people, and have your children walk up and down the street,” Goméz-Palacio said.

Pedestrianism is a worldwide trend, he said.

“People have recognized that pedestrian environments are linked to quality of life,” Goméz-Palacio said. “So think about the best places you can imagine in the world and they are all pedestrian-oriented.”

He added: “The highest quality of life is always in and around environments that are pedestrian- oriented.”

In some ways, this area is going backwards when it comes to walkable urban environments.

Years after municipal councils adopted the Pedestrian Charter, Veronica Walsh, 51, was killed on Victoria Street North in January. She was crossing midblock because there are no sidewalks on that stretch of Victoria Street.

Walsh was in a wheelchair and would have had to roll down the multi-lane roadway to the nearest intersection at Frederick Street to cross at a traffic signal.

Walsh was the second woman killed trying to cross that stretch of road within the past two years.

As some residents advocate for better walking conditions, the City of Kitchener is going in the opposite direction in some cases.

Kitchener has committed or earmarked about $70 million for the construction of parking garages in and around the downtown. This is happening while Waterloo Region lobbies for up to $800 million for light trail transit through Kitchener and Waterloo.

The City of Kitchener also fell way behind on the construction of trails in suburban neighbourhoods. Even after doubling the amount of money in the 10-year capital budget for new trail construction, it will take 15 to 20 years to catch up.

The construction of the Walter Bean Grand River Trail has been stalled for years, even though all of the money needed to pay for it has already been raised. The biggest gaps in that river-side trail are in Kitchener.
Post #3195
03-17-2010 05:17 PM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener Posts 2,027
Giving pedestrians more right-of-way

March 10, 2010
By Terry Pender, Record staff

WATERLOO REGION — Bob Henderson wants the province to take a close look at giving pedestrians more rights.

Henderson, the region’s manager of transportation engineering, wants the province to consider changes to the Highway Traffic Act that would require vehicles to stop for pedestrians who are standing beside a cross walk that is not controlled by signals, lights or signs.

“If it is just a marked cross walk on the pavement and someone is standing there waiting to cross the road, the driver must yield the right-of-way,” Henderson said of his proposal.

It will be considered by a special steering committee of traffic engineers and planners from around the province that is looking at changes to the Highway Traffic Act.

Henderson said Nova Scotia and British Columbia have had this in place for years.

“This is a big one, this is a paradigm shift,” Henderson said. “It is instilled in Ontario culture that vehicles have the right-of-way over pedestrians at uncontrolled locations.”

Cities everywhere are trying to become more walkable in an effort to reduce traffic congestion, ease air pollution and create vibrant streets.

Henderson’s proposal would make it much easier for pedestrians to cross busy streets that have no signals.

“If you see someone standing at the side of the road, you now automatically drive right by them,” Henderson said. “That’s our culture in Ontario right now, so we are talking about a big change.”

Walking in Waterloo Region can be risky. Each week, on average, two people are struck by a vehicle.

Vehicles killed four pedestrians here last year and three the year before that.

So far in 2010, two pedestrians died after being struck by vehicles, including a woman in a wheelchair on a stretch of Victoria Street North that has no sidewalks.

Henderson has carefully studied the data for the years 2004 to 2008. He’s found several trends:

The number of pedestrian collisions each year ranged from 109 to 119.

Between 60 per cent and 80 per cent of pedestrian collisions occur at signalized intersections when the pedestrian has the right-of-way.

Most often, the driver is turning left against oncoming traffic and is watching for a chance to turn. After committing to the turn, the driver plows into a pedestrian who is stepping off the curb to cross with the signal.

Other times, the driver is looking for a break in the traffic in order to make a right turn and plows into a pedestrian crossing with the walk signal.

“I can’t accept that as being a good track record,” Henderson said.

Roundabouts are much safer for pedestrians than signalized intersections, Henderson said.

The region’s first roundabout was built in 2004 at Ira Needles Boulevard and Erb Street West. The region now has 13 roundabouts open to traffic and more than 15 others are planned.

Between January 2005 and March 2009, there was only one pedestrian struck by a vehicle in that first roundabout at Ira Needles Boulevard and Erb Street West. It was minor and the pedestrian walked away from the mishap.

Henderson said that roundabout was compared to 158 signalized intersections with similar amounts of vehicles and pedestrians.

There were 63 pedestrian collisions at those signalized intersections during the same period.

Roundabouts are built in areas that do not get a lot of foot traffic, so Henderson refined his analysis further by comparing that first roundabout to signalized intersections that get an average of only 34 pedestrians a day.

In that category there were 15 pedestrian collisions compared to one at the Ira Needles-Erb Street roundabout.

“When you look at data and research around the world on the subject, it is no different than ours, it supports the fact that roundabouts are remarkably safer for pedestrians than traffic signals,” Henderson said.

I'm all for giving pedestrians the right of way, its important to protect them so that people will walk more. One thing that frustrates me sometimes is when pedestrians think they can do whatever they want. There are crosswalks for a reason, to allow a safe place for pedestrians to cross, but when they just wander out into the street wherever they want, its no wonder why people get hurt.
Post #3198
03-17-2010 05:31 PM

Senior Member
Date Jan 2010 Location Waterloo, ON Posts 290
Quote Originally Posted by Spokes View Post
One thing that frustrates me sometimes is when pedestrians think they can do whatever they want. There are crosswalks for a reason, to allow a safe place for pedestrians to cross, but when they just wander out into the street wherever they want, its no wonder why people get hurt.
Actually, pedestrians are in more danger at crosswalks. The reason for crosswalks and for the popularity of the popular and legal term jaywalking is to facilitate travel by automobile. See Tom Vanderbilt's defense of jaywalking.
Post #3204
03-17-2010 06:57 PM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener Posts 2,027
Quote Originally Posted by mpd618 View Post
Actually, pedestrians are in more danger at crosswalks. The reason for crosswalks and for the popularity of the popular and legal term jaywalking is to facilitate travel by automobile. See Tom Vanderbilt's defense of jaywalking.
Hmm thats an interesting article. A lot of good points I hadn't thought of.

That being said, I still think a lot of pedestrians don't use common sense when it comes to crossing a busy street. You can't just wander out into the street.
Post #3213
03-18-2010 01:07 AM

Date Feb 2010 Posts 65
This seems like a good time to link an awesome article on Gordon Price's blog, about motordom:

Before the city could be reconstructed for the sake of motorists, its streets had to be socially reconstructed as places motorists belonged.

Before the 1930s, children were free to play in the street and people could cross wherever they wanted. By the 1930s, motordom managed to convince people that the pedestrian, not the car, was the interloper and had to be restricted. The pejorative “jay walker” was introduced and public safety programs “educated” pedestrians to use signals and crosswalks.

They convinced the public the automobile should be accepted as the dominant user of the street, says Price.
I am all for taking streets back from cars, one jaywalker at a time.
Post #3219
03-18-2010 11:08 AM

Senior Member
Date Mar 2010 Location H2OWC Posts 302
I generally cross streets when it's safe to do so irrespective of traffic signals, crosswalks and other pedestrian "safeguards." I've seen too many instances when pedestrians have almost been taken out by negligent bozos, er, car drivers to trust my life to the Highway Traffic Act and/or local bylaws. So before I cross, I look in all directions to ensure that there are no cars (or bikes <ducks> ) within striking distance, and then I cross, red lights be damned.

As for the pedestrian charter, pardon my cynicism but there's no political will to tackle the problems we pedestrians have faced for decades in K-W. Let me give a simple example. Waterloo has several walking/cycling paths that lead to uptown including one that follows Laurel Creek from City Hall out to Hillside Park and beyond to Manulife out in the 'burbs. The problem is that to get from one end of the trail to the other you have to cross several major arteries like Bridgeport Rd, University Ave. and Columbia St. These crossings aren't signalled or crosswalked or even signed for the attention of car drivers. They're all located a couple of hundred meters from the nearest "safe" crossing point at an intersection. Now all of these are roads are multi-lane, traffic moves on them well in excess of posted speed limits and traffic is particularly heavy on them at times when pedestrians would want to cross them on their way to/from work. You don't need to be an junior traffic engineer to appreciate that this situation, which has been the status quo for years, discourages people from walking (or cycling) to work. The situation is similar along the Iron Horse trail in Kitchener and although the streets aren't as wide, there are more of them to cross.

Now politicians and traffic engineers in Waterloo Region appreciate this situation, yet with the sole exception of the Erb St crossing, they've done nothing about it in the past several years even with input from the Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee. They seem to have no trouble finding $millions to build new roads for car commuters but not even a fraction of that to make our urban trails a more practical, greener and safer alternative.
Post #3220
03-18-2010 11:25 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener Posts 2,027
I think you got it dead on, cross when it's safe to do so, not when there's a car directly in front of you, its just a matter of making smart decisions.

As for political will, as a result of the two incidents early on in 2010 I wouldn't be too surprised to see it come up amongst election candidates.
Post #3684
03-31-2010 01:33 PM

Senior Member
Date Mar 2010 Location H2OWC Posts 306
While the article appears in the Toronto Star it's just as valid in Waterloo Region: Pedestrians are the city's orphans
We can call it the “baby stroller effect”; when a mom pushing a stroller was killed by a car, it made the front page of all papers; much time in TV news was focused on it and everyone became concerned. Now pedestrian deaths are back on the forgotten pile...

We seem to justify pedestrians killed as a normal part of everyday city life in the 21st century; we blame it on the fact that he or she was “talking on the cellphone” or “listening to the i-Pod” or “probably jaywalking” or just “not paying attention.”

This common attitude might lower our concern and anxiety, but it is wrong. None of those actions justify getting killed! It is people like us, like our children and parents, our neighbours and friends, who are killed while they walk to their normal activities.

Everyday a Canadian is killed while walking (average last five years, StatsCan). Last year a pedestrian was injured by a car in Toronto every six hours (TO Police). There are more than twice as many pedestrians killed in Ontario as there are homicides by firearm.

Walking can and should be made safe for ALL. Period...

What are our political candidates saying about this? Who is the “champion of the pedestrians”? Who is willing to propose a one-line policy on the first day at work that “in this municipality pedestrians are first”? It would send a clear message to all stakeholders, municipal staff, developers, citizens, that everything that takes place in our communities should have pedestrians as a priority...

Make sure that your politician makes a commitment to do whatever is necessary to make walking a normal part of everyday life, and to make it SAFE for ALL.
Are there any regional or municipal politicians or candidates that have done more than pay lip service on this issue?
Post #3686
03-31-2010 02:56 PM

Senior Member
Date Jan 2010 Location Waterloo, ON Posts 291
Quote Originally Posted by IEFBR14 View Post
Are there any regional or municipal politicians or candidates that have done more than pay lip service on this issue?
Regional Coun. Jean Haalboom, together with staff, is working to get the Ontario Highway Traffic Act to give pedestrians legal right-of-way at crosswalks. I'll add other specifics when I think of them.
Post #5659
01-03-2010 05:24 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener-Waterloo Posts 1,647
WW Meet 2: Saturday May 29 4-7 PM
Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee

Who We Are
We are a citizens' group. We encourage and monitor the implementation of the Pedestrian Charter in the local municipalities in Waterloo Region.

Our activities include reviewing regional and municipal policies, advocating for pedestrians in the media, and making public presentations to municipal councillors, staff and relevant community organizations.

What Is a Pedestrian Charter?
The Pedestrian Charter is a set of principles about the value of walking.
Click here to read the full Pedestrian Charter as adopted in Waterloo Region.

Why Have a Pedestrian Charter?
Municipalities with a Pedestrian Charter know that walking is important for health and the environment. The charter helps city and regional councils, staff, and citizens think about how to encourage walking. The charter calls for infrastructure and policies that support walking.

Who Has Adopted the Pedestrian Charter?
In 2005, the Region of Waterloo, the City of Kitchener and the City of Cambridge adopted the Pedestrian Charter. In 2008, the City of Waterloo adopted a customized version of the Pedestrian Charter.

Why Does Walking Matter?
Many people rely on walking to get around. Even many car and transit trips begin and end by walking. A walkable city is safer and makes it easier for people to walk more. And the more people walk, the healthier they are - and the cleaner our air is. Walking is also an important option for people who can't afford a car.
Post #5660
04-27-2010 08:51 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener-Waterloo Posts 1,665
Council Enquiries And Requests For Information: Planning and Works Committee
As of ROW:Planning and Works Committee April 27, 2010 Meeting

Meeting date | Requestor | Request | Assigned Department | Anticipated Response Date

11-Aug-09 | Committee | Staff report on local pedestrian/cyclist injuries | Transportation Planning | Near Future

01-Dec-09 | P&W | Staff report on obtaining changes to Highway Traffic Act to give right of way to pedestrians | Transportation and Environmental Services | Sep-2010
Post #6030
05-03-2010 09:53 AM

Senior Member
Date Mar 2010 Location H2OWC Posts 306
[Do we need a separate thread on accessibility issues?]

Walk highlights urban accessibility issues
There was a telling moment during a Sunday afternoon walk that illustrated just how difficult it can be for someone like Edward Faruzel to get around.

Co-hosting a Jane’s Walk about downtown accessibility, Faruzel was manoeuvring his wheelchair outside the Boathouse in Victoria Park when he rolled into a depression in the interlocking brick.

Something that was nearly imperceptible to the walkers in the area proved potentially hazardous for Faruzel, who lives with cerebral palsy. And although Faruzel is the first to say that accessibility is improving all the time, it was proof that challenges still abound.

Faruzel and his friend Jeff Kratky guided small groups through the downtown core on Saturday and Sunday afternoon, one of the series of walks dedicated to urban writer and thinker Jane Jacobs.

Travelling along city streets and through Victoria Park, the pair highlighted several examples of thoughtful consideration for those with physical challenges — and noted other places that would remain off-limits.

“When I was young, there were no ramps anywhere,” said Faruzel, board chair for Kitchener-Waterloo Access-Ability. “Now, people are getting older … It’s just getting better for everyone.”

But for every fully-accessible business or well-designed intersection, it’s not that difficult to find obstacles like stairs or uncut curbs.

“We’re not consistent with what he needs,” noted participant Dianne Arndt.

And it’s not always an all-or-nothing situation, Kratky pointed out. The city-owned Boathouse, for example, is fully accessible through the external washroom doors — which proved fine during a visit once by Faruzel, until city staff locked those outside doors later in the evening.

With no Boathouse employees in possession of a key, Faruzel was essentially marooned inside the venue until some patrons jury-rigged a ramp out of some scrap wood.

“You have to be able to improvise. Things may not be exactly 100 per cent perfect,” Faruzel said.

“I was happy that there was awareness being raised for some of these issues,” said participant Irene Metzger, whose son faces accessibility challenges.

Metzger said she shares Faruzel’s belief that, for the most part, the situation is improving. When Metzger raised concerns, for example, about a sidewalk problem near her home, city staff were quick to respond.

“Some people move here because this city is more accessible,” she said.
Post #6034
05-03-2010 10:01 AM

Senior Moderator
Date Dec 2009 Location Kitchener Posts 2,036
Quote Originally Posted by IEFBR14 View Post
[Do we need a separate thread on accessibility issues?]
I think for now this is the right spot for this. Fits here better than the Jane's Walk thread because it's about the issue of accessability rather than the walk itself.
Post #6047
05-03-2010 12:29 PM

Transportation & Infrastructure Moderator
Date Feb 2010 Location Kitchener, Ontario Posts 288
"Only the insane have the strength enough to prosper. Only those that prosper may truly judge what is sane."
Quote Originally Posted by IEFBR14 View Post
Do we need a separate thread on accessibility issues?
I'll keep it here for now. If we end up with so much information that it derails the pedestrian safety portion of this thread, I'll move the accessiblity posts into a new thread.