Questions sent to the candidates
1. How do you consider we can improve Dunedin's reputation to make it more walking & cycle friendly for locals and visitors?
2. In your role as a Councillor/Mayor would you commit to acting according to the principles in the International Walking Charter which apply equally to cycling
3. Do you support opening the Caversham and Chain Hills Tunnels to cyclists and walkers to provide a near flat and safer route between Dunedin and Mosgiel?
4. Do you support the current situation on John Wilson Ocean Drive which is open to vehicles with parking for half its length and open for walking and cycling the final kilometre?
5. What other initiatives would you propose to help make walking and cycling in Dunedin enjoyable?
Responses in alphabetical order (Mosgiel Taieri Ward)
1. I think there is a tourism opportunity to promote Dunedin/Mosgiel as the stage 2 continuation of the Clyde Middlemarch Rail trail.
This could be done when and if walking/cycle tracks are put in place from Wingatui to Dunedin.
Connecting transport either by road or train could be scheduled from Middlemarch.
Other walks and rides around the city can be promoted by the council through Tourism Dunedin, by private enterprise and via the likes of the “I Site” info shops.
2. Yes but I also would take into account the need for allowing public and private transport as a freedom of choice for the community.
3. Yes. Subject to adequate funding being available at some future time. Please note we need to take into consideration of the high debt levels and current commitments of the DCC.
4. No I feel the Ocean Drive with its fabulous views needs to be open to for the whole community and visitors to the city to share and enjoy. This does not limit the access to cyclists and walkers to the road. For various reasons not all of the community are mobile to bike or walk to take in the panoramic views that this road offers. It should also be considered that a large number of very long term rate payers are in that less mobile sector.
5. I feel that the incoming Council needs to be open to consultation to the likes of the Living Streets Dunedin organisation during any relevant planning process.
I would however like to point out that many very worthy projects for the community will have to be delayed until such time as the City achieves a better financial state.
1. I have several ideas on how we can improve Dunedin's cycling 'tourism'. I mentioned on my profile www.elections2010.co.nz/2010/candidates/craig-watson one of my top 5 issues is health and I have some ideas to make the most of the Mosgiel-Taieri area, an area already used by locals from the region every weekend.
2. Yes !
3. Yes I was very surprised to see the costing PWC put out (was it gold lined!?!) and would like to see more details on pricing. I occasionally bike to work from Mosgiel to Dunedin so I really want to see it opened but at a feasible costing to ratepayers.
4. Yes I do. I understand it has lowered Dunedin's suicide rate, I would like to see the area developed to allow further walking, cycling and picnicking.
5. I am campaigning on Health and Recreation, and I am very open to the suggestions from your groups. Every weekend I see groups coming out from town to the Taieri to ride with their friends. I believe we should set up routes/maps and safer riding lanes for cyclists to use. Trips that can range from 5km to 40km. These could be sign posted, put on mapmyride.com and onto the DCC website. Riding the Taieri is a great for all and we can use this as a tourist venture. We could make it our version of the Rail Trail!
1. Promote ourselves with more images of us doing it, promote street furniture like seats that encourage and enable people to take part but also rest, especially in areas of higher age groups - but also useful for mothers with push chairs etc, make sure our footpaths are just that - not a continual number of driveways joined together with asphalt!
3. This is a fantastic heritage project with many other beneficial attributes. I believe they should be opened - the challenge is how and who by. As a Trustee of the Otago central rail trail I believe that a similar model would be possible. i see Council taking a facilitation/ enabling role addressing its own piping issues etc itself but working with the interested parties for them to open the tunnels.
5. Encouraging the opportunities for walking. the number of children walking to school should be substantially increased for general better health and better traffic management, but we plan networks to encourage driving rather than the other way round. The John Wilson Drive experience has been good in that it shows that where we discourage something, access is still made, people will just do it differently.
Waikouaiti Chalmers Ward
1. Firstly close parts of George Street and the Octagon to traffic, make the centre of town much more friendly to locals and visitors rather than cars. I would like to see a trial of this during all school holidays when the town is full of families. Once retailers and us lazy car drivers get used to the roads being closed they will adapt.
3. There is huge enthusiasm in Dunedin for both more safe opportunities to walk and cycle away from motorized traffic both for recreation and for commuting. In the long run any development of route, which will make it possible for people to get around our hilly city will be great. However our city now has huge debt and major rates rises. Any new projects must be staggered so they don’t add massive costs to the projected peaks of rates increases. We need to let people be fully consulted and decide how to prioritize future developments. (short answer: yes, very desirable, multiple benefits, when we can afford it, after consultation).
4. Yes, lets share the space. This may be a way of helping people get out of their car if they want to enjoy the view and the sea air!
5. Firstly the Port to town cycle-way needs to be finished. That road is really dangerous but due to it being mostly flat it is a great cycle route. I’d like to have a cycle Sunday initiative where one side of the one-way roads would be closed to cars on Sundays and open for walkers and cyclists to get out and about and make it easy to cross the city. Town planning and design factors such as speed limits, cycle lanes, improved bus services which are cycle friendly, shopping centres which are people friendly not designed for cars (pack and slave and Warehouse in South Dunedin is a design disaster for everyone except cars!) There is so much more but I’ve run out of words!