Thursday, October 27, 2011

Grover Telford, candidate Maple Ridge Council 2011

1. What modes of transportation do you normally use within your community and within Metro Vancouver
As a small business owner who does mainly home services I am somewhat trapped in my work van when it comes to work.  In my leisure time I certainly enjoy cycling, but I want to be honest with voters in saying that at this time I cannot incorporate cycling into my business which is how I support my family.

2. How would you support and encourage cycling for transportation - for people of all ages and abilities - to promote healthy and livable communities?
What we need to develop is a multiuse paths that are based around non-combustible transportation so that cycles can move around beside individuals walking or others using mobility devices.  It is a tall order but if the standard road is over 30 feet wide I think we can work towards developing pathways that can be 10 – 15 wide and multiuse and used for healthy initiatives.

3. There have been many surveys asking people what it would take to get them on a bike. The number one thing people want is separated cycling facilities. How would you support separated bike lanes on key routes? If you are not in support, please explain why.
I would support separate bike lanes by creating an environment around sponsorship.  We cannot increases property taxes any more than they are, but it is possible to still get much needed infrastructure such as dedicated/multiuse bike lanes.  I want to stress, I am in support of the aforementioned multiuse lanes which I think will have a lower environmental impact and still create a safer environment for cyclist to commute father lengths, which can also incorporate work and play into their daily lives.

4. Maple Ridge has no off-road (non-mountain-) biking/multi-use trails and is lagging behind other Lower Mainland communities in this respect. How do you feel off-road biking/multi-use trails can benefit Maple Ridge, and how do you suggest to start developing a network of trails.
I think that multi-use trails can benefit Maple Ridge in that it can create many tourist opportunities and bring people to our town.  One of these opportunities would be in the form of Eco-tourism.  A well planned and laid out off road bike trail could take individuals through green spaces, with minimal impact on those spaces, and be designed to promote other business in Maple Ridge to visit after a day on the trails.  Off road trails could also be integrated into a larger system of over night camping areas tied into the larger parks system already in place.  I would suggest we start this development from a birds eye view such as Google Earth.  Give all citizens a true understanding of the impact and benefits of where such trails would be located so as a city we can maximize out investment while minimizing our environmental impact.

5. If elected, would you aim to increase or decrease cycling funding from current levels? Do you feel that cycling funding levels should merely reflect the present level of cycling in our communities, or should it reflect the potential of cycling - not only as a means of transportation and for recreation, but also in view of the many desirable benefits cycling has for individuals as well as for our communities/society, such as health benefits, improved livability, reduced greenhouse gasses/pollution, reduced oil-dependency, reduced need for expensive car infrastructure/parking lots, reduced congestion, etc.?
In a nut shell I would work with other levels of government to improve cycling infrastructure.  There are many benefits from cycling that will have positive spin offs for people’s health and the environment.  I would look at funding from the standpoint of projected use as opposed to just looking at how many cyclist there are today.   This is a great example of it is is built they will come.  I believe if we have the infrastructure in place we will have more people cycling and I would work with other levels of government to achieve this.

6. What is your level of interest in a public bike-share system integrated with the transit system? How do you think a public bike-share system in Vancouver can benefit Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows residents?
In my ideal world we would be developing a more direct shuttle system from a central point in Maple Ridge that would end at one or two specific points West and South.  This will allow cyclist to get around Maple Ridge, get them to a further point, at which point they could cycle the rest.  I would have to see what the costs of a public share bike system would be before I commit to it.  The idea is sound in principal but the implementation may have a number of issues that are not on the surface that would have to be dealt with.

7. What role do you think the municipality has in supporting and promoting cycling education for children, cyclists and motorists?
I think that municipalities could promote and support cycling by creating an environment at city hall which is more conducive to organizations such as yours to have events.  Cut out the red tape and offer support around promotion and ideally event insurance which is often a difficult cost to cover for not for profit organizations.

8. How do you feel e-bikes can play a role in our transportation system?
What do you see as the benefits of e-bikes as compared to cars?
What can e-bikes mean for less densely populated suburban communities like Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows?
8a I feel that e-bikes can play the same role as bicycles in our transportation system.
8b E-bikes will have fewer emission than cars they will also take up less room which will reduce congestions, both good things.
8c E-bikes help by giving more options to Maple Ridge residents to explore our city, shop here, and ideally bike to work once the city develops a better reputation as being open for business startup.

9. Would you be interested in joining members of the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition on a bike ride through your community?
Though busy during the election I would love to join your coalition on a ride.

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