Smithers Active Transportation Plan
The Town of Smithers, this spring 2019, will be working to create its first Active Transportation Plan (ATP) to better support active mobility options in our community. This includes any method of human-powered transportation that you take to get yourself, or others, from one place to another, such as destinations for a specific purpose (e.g. school, work, shopping, etc.) or for recreation and leisure. The ATP will set the foundation for developing well-connected, attractive active transportation networks that are safe, convenient and accessible for people of all ages and abilities. On a broader scale, the plan will also further the Town’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by replacing carbon dioxide (CO2) generating transportation with active transportation options and decreasing dependency on fossil fuels vehicles.
The Smithers ATP is not simply an application of best practices from elsewhere, rather, the plan and process will seek to reflect the neighbourhood, people, climate and geography of Smithers. Public involvement is a core component to achieving a “made in Smithers ATP” and will provide an opportunity to not only exchange ideas, information and concerns with the community, but also seek advice and innovation to encourage dialogue that will establish common ground for action.
Here’s how you can get involved:
- Complete the Survey. Open from April 3rd – May 27th, 2019 provide your thoughts on key issues, opportunities and overall plan direction. (Link to be provided in April)
Participate in Citizen Photo Mapping. Open from April 3rd – June 10th, 2019 share your photos that illustrate existing active transportation infrastructure that either supports or hinders your ability to actively move throughout Smithers. We want you to capture what is working well and, more importantly, what needs to be addressed through the ATP. The photos will be used by the project team to better understand the barriers to active transportation in the community and the types of strategies that could be considered in the ATP. Instructions for this activity are as follows:
a) Snap up to five photos of active transportation infrastructure or facilities that you like. This may include sidewalks, trails, bike routes or something else entirely.
b) Snap up to five photos of active transportation infrastructure or facilities that are not working for you due to safety concerns, gaps in the network or other barriers that make it challenging for you to get around by an active mode.
c) Once you have captured your photos, please send them via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please label and number your photos and include a one sentence caption in your email that captures the location and description of each photo.
d) As another option, you could post your photos to the Recreation Smithers Facebook page. Please ensure your photo includes a caption.
- Attend the Ideas Fair. April 2019 TBA – During this event learn about the project, help build a vision for the ATP and provide feedback on barriers in the existing network and opportunities to be incorporated in the ATP. Participants will interact with information presented on display boards and members of the project team.
- Open House. In early September 2019 (date TBA) attend the Open House to learn about the draft ATP and to provide your feedback on the recommended strategies and overall plan direction.
The purpose of the Smithers ATP is to identify strategies that integrate accessible, multi-use, pedestrian and cycling improvements to replace CO2 generating transportation and decrease dependency on fossil fuel vehicles with active transportation alternatives. Specific objectives of the ATP are to:
- Increase the safety and frequency of use of active transport;
- Improve connections between downtown, residential neighbourhoods, schools, rural residential areas and front country tourism assets;
- Create measurable targets that increase active transportation choices by 2021; and
- Advance the Town’s commitment to reducing GHG emissions.
Over the last decade, Smithers has completed numerous plans and processes related to community sustainability, accessibility and infrastructure improvements. These previous documents serve as the foundation for Smithers Active Transportation Plan to both connect with and build upon. These include:
- Smithers Bike Route Map
- Trails Plan 2017
- Town of Smithers Official Community Plan BL. 1614, 2010
- Age-Friendly Assessment and Action Plan 2016
- Pedestrian Plan 2014
- 2015-2018 Smithers Council Strategic Priorities
- Community & Corporate Energy and GHG Emissions Reduction Plans (2012)
Mark Allen, P. Eng
Director of Development Services
or email email@example.com