Comment 800

By Rusty (registered) - website | Posted August 15, 2006 at 12:25:25

Hi Scmadrian,

Those are all great questions and objectives. I think you'll find, if you dig around in the archives of RTH, that they've all been discussed to some degree, but it's good to be reminded of them and your point is well taken.

wrt your transit in Gore Park comments - please don't close your mind on this issue. What you appear to be arguing is that 1. We need to make transit convenient, and dropping people off outside of the Gore is NOT convenient, and 2. This is not really even an issue and is definitely not a priority for the revitialization of the downtown. Sound fair?

Here's my take:

While you site transit in Brighton as an example of a good downtown transit system I am thinking of examples from other European cities, and I look at the needs of transit users/car drivers and pedestrians as a whole. Just as we can't turn the entire downtown over to car users - by allowing our freeways to ride right over it - neither can we give it over entirely to other modes of transit - like the bus. We need a good balance. So what we (well me at least) are saying is that Gore Park needs to cater more to pedestrian and cyclist modes of transit. Remember that it is pedestrians/cyclists - aka slow moving traffic - that brings business to the core. They need to have a pleasant walking experience or they won't come back - this is paramount. Now I know you will say that "we need to get these pedestrians into the core in the first place" and I agree. But the truth is that parking a bus round the back of the Plaza - 2 maybe 3 minutes walk away - is not going to kill people. And the benefits of pedestrianizing Gore Park - as can be seen in Public Plazas all over Europe - will be immense. - As for priorities I agree that everything you say is important. The truth is that we (RTH) do not advocate doing all of this in sequential order, rather we should be doing many things concurrently. There are a few articles on RTH - I forget which, you'd have to dig around - that talk about our image and the need for us to identify our target economic hubs and build on our strengths. I agree this is critical. But it's a separate discussion from the topic of transit in Gore Park. The reason this has been highlighted is that it is a concrete and doable item that has been proven to attract more customers to the downtown. It should absolutely not be done in isolation - there are many other factors that need to be addressed too - but it can be done, and it will work.

Thanks for chiming in.

Ben RTH

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