I spent more of my long weekend than intended summarizing Winnipeg’s Mayoral candidates’ platforms for an epic tweet thread.
This got me thinking about what the most important issues to me personally.
This city is very bad at winter!
Last year especially was an epic disaster of unplowed sidewalks and streets. Forget winter biking, winter walking is often impossible.
We’ve been at this for nearly 150years we should be better at this.
- For starters dump as much money as physically possible into the snow clearing/winter maintenance budget!
- Plow sidewalks and bike lanes at the same time as the streets that border them. If not sooner.
- Investigate grooming bike paths instead of plowing them (like the do in Finland).
- Mandate Edmonton’s Winter City Design guidelines.
- Fine contractors who use active transport to dump snow. Set aggressive timelines in their contracts and fine them when they fail to meet them.
Cars have their place in modern cities, I am probably more pro-car than the average subscriber to Not Just Bikes.
But it’s becoming exceedingly clear that North American car-centric urban design was a giant mistake! We need to reverse course before it’s too late.
- Make it more expensive and inconvenient to drive: eliminate free parking, slow streets to a reasonable level, implement traffic calming measure.
- Eliminate parking minimums.
- Disincentivize surface parking lots.
- Make public transit free.
- Invest heavily in bike infrastructure.
Defund The Police
It’s becoming incredibly obvious that the current incarnation of the police are not very good at stopping or solving crime. And they just seem to eat up massive amounts of city budgets (with helicopters and robot dogs) for no apparent reason.
I don’t have specific ideas on this one, it’s a difficult problem and the city governments have limited ability to make changes without provincial help.
BTW if you think defunding the police is wacky left-wing idea, just remember that we wouldn’t have paramedics if City of Pittsburgh hasn’t allowed their police to be defunded.