Friday, 1 June 2012

Liveable cities

I recall reading an article several years ago that people living in urban centres tend to walk more than those living in newer urban areas because of the integration of residential and commercial spaces, meaning that residents can easily get to and from living, working, shopping, and recreating spaces without having to get in their car. Civic engagement and social and physical health are all enhanced by the mere act of moving about our urban environment by means other than a car. 

These days there is a strong international movement around the notion of making our built environments more liveable by creating a "city of short distances" where balanced transportation planning makes possible commuting via pedestrian networks, bicycle networks, traffic quietened streets and public transportation.

Oak Bay is blessed in already being a city of short distances. We have the "village" as well as small neighbourhood shopping/business areas that are integrated into neighbourhoods (think Estevan village, Casey's and Demi-Tasse in south Oak Bay, and Cadboro Bay Road shops). But, we can do better. 

That is why we now have the Active Transportation Advisory Committee - a group of 11 residents appointed by municipal council and mandated to provide advice and recommendations supporting active transportation options for our community.  

We look forward to lots of lively discussion around ideas and ways that Oak Bay can be made even better - through infrastructure improvements that will enable all residents regardless of age or mobility, to move easily through and across our municipality.

No comments:

Post a Comment