The District of Central Saanich is presenting the draft of its first ever Active Transportation Plan to the community for feedback. The Plan includes infrastructure projects as well as policies and programs to encourage walking, cycling, rolling, transit use and traffic safety.
Active transportation is a top priority of the community, reflected in correspondence to the District as well as in the results of the 2019 Citizen Survey and the 2021 Budget Survey. Central Saanich Council included investing in active transportation as one of its priorities for 2021-2022.
The public is encouraged to visit LetsTalkCentralSaanich.ca/ActiveTransportation to read the plan, register for an information session and provide feedback through a survey.
Based on extensive public input, the Active Transportation Plan provides a course of action that reflects available resources and the community’s priorities, which include road safety, crosswalks, school zones, and addressing gaps in the network. A long list of projects were assessed to determine the priority projects to fit the District’s financial capacity. Projects were selected based on a number of criteria, including community feedback, projected use, addressing gaps in the AT network gaps and connecting trip origins-destinations, and safety.
Active transportation is a new initiative for the District without an existing funding source. Therefore, as part of the District’s update to the Sustainable Asset Management Plan and long-term financial planning work scheduled for 2021, new active transportation infrastructure will be included, and financial plan changes and options will be brought forward to Council.
In the meantime, the District has included projects in the 2021 draft budget, including: $15,000 for the completion of the AT Plan; $22,000 for bus stop improvements; a grant-funded $322,800 multi-use path on Benvenuto from Wallace Drive to Butchart Gardens, and a grant application for $1,150,000 worth of improvements in school zones. The District plans to continue taking advantage of funding opportunities and applying for grants that fit projects in the plan.
Visit LetsTalkCentralSaanich.ca/ActiveTransportation to review the plan and provide feedback. The District will use the community’s input to finalize the Plan before presenting it to Council in the spring.