COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: A call to action for all Hamilton residents

Opinion Mar 14, 2017 by Terry Whitehead Hamilton Mountain News

There’s a small but vocal group of well-intentioned ideologues who, through the use of social media and other activities, continually try to have a disproportionate influence on senior staff and council’s decisions.

They have a narrow view of what should happen in the City of Hamilton. Some people describe them as anti-car, requesting actions such as putting roads on road diets, more delineated bike lanes, elimination of parking lots, raising parking rates and support for LRT in absence of having good and strong policies in place.

It is important for me to lift the veil so the many residents in our community who have different life experiences and challenges understand there is a real attempt to have major decisions made in absence of their legitimate concerns.

The challenge is some of the arguments they make are real and should be considered. These arguments, however, are made in a vacuum and in absence of full consultation with all stakeholders impacted or a full understanding of fiscal or tax implications, and would mean a significant increase in travel times for anyone living outside of the downtown corridor.

They believe there is only one path and that they have all the solutions for the city’s problems, yet they show no appreciation or understanding of the needs of the greater community.

The complete street approach is prudent and I have strongly recommended that the City of Hamilton adopts the City of Edmonton’s complete street guidelines as it is a balanced approach and understands the function of our road networks. I believe this provides a more realistic approach to facilitating modal shifts without compromising the movement of goods, services and vehicle traffic throughout our city.

Without question, it would be nice to have more people on our public transit systems, leaving their cars at home, but it should not be dictated through a social-engineering approach and attempt to vilify anyone who chooses or needs to use a vehicle. Many people choose to use the automobile for a whole array of reasons and choice should never be eliminated in a democratic society.

Climate change is an important issue and the city has taken many steps to address this. With the onset of battery-operated autonomous vehicles and buses, we will see a greater level of efficiency in the use of our road network, while lowering our carbon footprint. We must understand these coming changes and ensure that through policy, road design and transit planning we have the infrastructure in place to facilitate the city of tomorrow.

This is a call to action. It is time for members of the broader community to express their views and concerns and contact their councillors.

Let’s ensure that the narrative for the future of the City of Hamilton is not influenced by such a small group of single-minded crusaders.

Terry Whitehead is city councillor for Ward 8 (west Mountain).

COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: A call to action for all Hamilton residents

Small group trying to have disproportionate influence on council’s decisions

Opinion Mar 14, 2017 by Terry Whitehead Hamilton Mountain News

There’s a small but vocal group of well-intentioned ideologues who, through the use of social media and other activities, continually try to have a disproportionate influence on senior staff and council’s decisions.

They have a narrow view of what should happen in the City of Hamilton. Some people describe them as anti-car, requesting actions such as putting roads on road diets, more delineated bike lanes, elimination of parking lots, raising parking rates and support for LRT in absence of having good and strong policies in place.

It is important for me to lift the veil so the many residents in our community who have different life experiences and challenges understand there is a real attempt to have major decisions made in absence of their legitimate concerns.

The challenge is some of the arguments they make are real and should be considered. These arguments, however, are made in a vacuum and in absence of full consultation with all stakeholders impacted or a full understanding of fiscal or tax implications, and would mean a significant increase in travel times for anyone living outside of the downtown corridor.

They believe there is only one path and that they have all the solutions for the city’s problems, yet they show no appreciation or understanding of the needs of the greater community.

They believe there is only one path and that they have all the solutions for the city’s problems, yet they show no appreciation or understanding of the needs of the greater community.

The complete street approach is prudent and I have strongly recommended that the City of Hamilton adopts the City of Edmonton’s complete street guidelines as it is a balanced approach and understands the function of our road networks. I believe this provides a more realistic approach to facilitating modal shifts without compromising the movement of goods, services and vehicle traffic throughout our city.

Without question, it would be nice to have more people on our public transit systems, leaving their cars at home, but it should not be dictated through a social-engineering approach and attempt to vilify anyone who chooses or needs to use a vehicle. Many people choose to use the automobile for a whole array of reasons and choice should never be eliminated in a democratic society.

Climate change is an important issue and the city has taken many steps to address this. With the onset of battery-operated autonomous vehicles and buses, we will see a greater level of efficiency in the use of our road network, while lowering our carbon footprint. We must understand these coming changes and ensure that through policy, road design and transit planning we have the infrastructure in place to facilitate the city of tomorrow.

This is a call to action. It is time for members of the broader community to express their views and concerns and contact their councillors.

Let’s ensure that the narrative for the future of the City of Hamilton is not influenced by such a small group of single-minded crusaders.

Terry Whitehead is city councillor for Ward 8 (west Mountain).

COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: A call to action for all Hamilton residents

Small group trying to have disproportionate influence on council’s decisions

Opinion Mar 14, 2017 by Terry Whitehead Hamilton Mountain News

There’s a small but vocal group of well-intentioned ideologues who, through the use of social media and other activities, continually try to have a disproportionate influence on senior staff and council’s decisions.

They have a narrow view of what should happen in the City of Hamilton. Some people describe them as anti-car, requesting actions such as putting roads on road diets, more delineated bike lanes, elimination of parking lots, raising parking rates and support for LRT in absence of having good and strong policies in place.

It is important for me to lift the veil so the many residents in our community who have different life experiences and challenges understand there is a real attempt to have major decisions made in absence of their legitimate concerns.

The challenge is some of the arguments they make are real and should be considered. These arguments, however, are made in a vacuum and in absence of full consultation with all stakeholders impacted or a full understanding of fiscal or tax implications, and would mean a significant increase in travel times for anyone living outside of the downtown corridor.

They believe there is only one path and that they have all the solutions for the city’s problems, yet they show no appreciation or understanding of the needs of the greater community.

They believe there is only one path and that they have all the solutions for the city’s problems, yet they show no appreciation or understanding of the needs of the greater community.

The complete street approach is prudent and I have strongly recommended that the City of Hamilton adopts the City of Edmonton’s complete street guidelines as it is a balanced approach and understands the function of our road networks. I believe this provides a more realistic approach to facilitating modal shifts without compromising the movement of goods, services and vehicle traffic throughout our city.

Without question, it would be nice to have more people on our public transit systems, leaving their cars at home, but it should not be dictated through a social-engineering approach and attempt to vilify anyone who chooses or needs to use a vehicle. Many people choose to use the automobile for a whole array of reasons and choice should never be eliminated in a democratic society.

Climate change is an important issue and the city has taken many steps to address this. With the onset of battery-operated autonomous vehicles and buses, we will see a greater level of efficiency in the use of our road network, while lowering our carbon footprint. We must understand these coming changes and ensure that through policy, road design and transit planning we have the infrastructure in place to facilitate the city of tomorrow.

This is a call to action. It is time for members of the broader community to express their views and concerns and contact their councillors.

Let’s ensure that the narrative for the future of the City of Hamilton is not influenced by such a small group of single-minded crusaders.

Terry Whitehead is city councillor for Ward 8 (west Mountain).