ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION HUBS IN WATERLOO REGION: A RESEARCH PILOT PROJECT - PREPARED FOR CLIMATEACTIONWR BY HEATHER MCDIARMID FROM MCDIARMID ...
Page content transcription
If your browser does not render page correctly, please read the page content below
ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION HUBS IN WATERLOO REGION: A RESEARCH PILOT PROJECT Prepared for ClimateActionWR by Heather McDiarmid from McDiarmid Climate Consulting
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 01 TABLE OF CONTENTS 02..........Acknowledgments 02..........Executive Summary 03..........1.0 Introduction 05..........2.0 Current state of active transportation in Waterloo Region 05..................... 2.1 Active transportation infrastructure 05..................... 2.2 Municipal active transportation plans 06..................... 2.3 Active transportation mode share 06..................... 2.4 Active transportation attitudes 07..................... 2.5 Active transportation and demographics 08..........3.0 Local barriers to active transportation 08..................... 3.1 Barriers to cycling 10..................... 3.2 Barriers to walking 11..........4.0 Programming to Address Barriers 12..................... 4.1 Program descriptions 16..................... 4.2 Program evaluation 17..................... 4.3 Gaps in existing active transportation programming 18..................... 4.4 Estimated Material Costs 19..........5.0 Target Neighbourhoods 19..................... 5.1 Evaluating potential target neighbourhoods 20..................... 5.2 Target neighbourhoods in Waterloo Region 21..........6.0 Partnerships 21..................... 6.1 Evaluating potential partners 23..................... 6.2 Potential Major Partners 24..........7.0 Recommendations 26..........8.0 Conclusions 27..........Appendix A: Links for local active transportation resources 30..........Appendix B: ClimateActionWR 2020 active transportation survey results 38..........Appendix C: Maps used to identify target neighbourhoods 50..........Appendix D: Asset maps for target neighbourhoods 61..........Appendix E: Lists of potential partners and target neighbourhoods 62..........Appendix F: Potential sources of funding 63..........Sources
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 02 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ClimateActionWR acknowledges the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) for their valuable contribution to this work. ClimateActionWR received financial assistance to develop this case study as part of the FCM Transition 2050 Grant that was awarded to develop Waterloo Region’s Community Climate Action Strategy. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Waterloo Region has a goal of reducing its In addition, these hubs can promote, expand community greenhouse gas emissions by 80% and enhance existing active transportation below 2010 levels by 2050. Cutting emissions programs, ensuring they reach underserved from transportation, the largest community source communities and address their unique barriers. of emissions, will require a shift toward active A total of 11 neighbourhoods were identified as travel for shorter trips: walking, biking, wheeling, targets for active transportation hubs, based rolling, and others. All local municipalities on low active transportation mode share, high have invested and continue to invest in active potential for active travel and a prevalence of transportation infrastructure. Currently, only a very our target populations: those who have a low small fraction of residents choose to walk or cycle income, are newcomers or immigrants, and to destinations, but far more are open to the idea: belong to minority groups. Several organizations they are “interested but concerned”. Research have expressed interest in exploring a potential suggests that the barriers that cause concern partnership for delivering active transportation include distances, travel times, safety concerns, hubs, although there remains a need to find a cargo, physical health limitations, access to partner willing to take the lead in developing bikes, and social norms. Active transportation the hubs and in providing the space for a full hubs, which are welcoming spaces with programs time hub. This research report culminates in 17 and supports for active travel, can help those recommendations for how to develop active interested overcome many of these barriers and transportation hubs in the Waterloo Region that develop new active travel behaviours. These meet the specific needs of each of the three hubs may be available to local residents on a full cities (Cambridge, Kitchener, and Waterloo). If time or part time basis, offering programs such implemented, Waterloo Region could address the as DIY bike repair, workshops, buddy programs, concerns of those interested in more active travel educational and awareness campaigns, trip thereby encouraging the travel choices that make planning and others. for healthy people, strong communities, and a stable climate.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 03 1.0 INTRODUCTION This report summarizes the results of an FCM Transportation accounted for 49% of all Waterloo (Federation of Canadian Municipalities) funded Region community greenhouse gas emissions research pilot project into the feasibility of in 20152. Furthermore, nearly half of all personal adding community active transportation hubs trips in the region are short distance trips of less as a means of increasing active travel mode than 5 km that could generally be achieved using share for utilitarian trips under 5 km in the cities active forms of transportation3. Promoting a shift of Cambridge, Kitchener, and Waterloo1. Active in transportation behaviour for these trips will transportation hubs are welcoming spaces where be crucial for achieving the Region’s long-term there are supports and tools to help clients choose climate commitment of an 80% reduction in active transportation to reach their destinations. Key emissions below 2010 levels by 2050. target populations include low-income, immigrants Active transportation is used here to refer to any and newcomers, and minority groups. The Building method of traveling to a destination that uses Bike Culture Beyond Downtown report was primarily human power: walking, biking, used as a framework for how to develop active scootering, skateboarding, using a wheelchair, transportation hubs. e-biking4, and others. In practice, walking and biking are the dominant active transportation Active transportation hubs choices. An average person can travel 2 km on foot and 5 km on a bike in 20-25 minutes. are welcoming spaces where there attractive routes. are supports and tools to help clients choose active transportation. Hubs may offer DIY bike repair, workshops, group bike rides, educational and awareness campaigns, trip planning, and other supports. They typically operate in partnership with mission-aligned organizations that have strong, positive relationships with the community. 1 This report focusses on the potential for active transportation hubs in the three cities of Waterloo Region, but over the long term, the plan is to also bring programs and hubs to the townships. 4 E-bikes are included here because they are zero-emission vehicles that help people of many ages, abilities and destinations to choose cycling.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 04 Active transportation mitigates climate change, are part time. These are community sites that and it also has major benefits for the individual host programs on a regular and predictable basis and the community. For the individual, active but cannot operate full time due to factors such transportation can improve physical and mental as lack of space, smaller client base, and low health, save money, provide more travel options, destination density. Permanent signage at part and increase autonomy. The community also time hub locations create a constant presence benefits from less air pollution, a more resilient that informs residents of available programs and transportation system, friendlier and safer symbolizes a commitment to, and investment in streets, poverty reductions, and infrastructure the community. cost savings5. The hubs themselves can help to Partnerships are an essential part of an active build strong communities, divert waste through transportation hub. Partners may provide links bike refurbishment, help to settle immigrants and to the community, facilities, staff and volunteers, newcomers to the community, and engage youth. and programming support. In return, the hubs In the long term, growth in active transportation enhance the programs offered by the partner use can also encourage the evolution toward organization and may draw in new clients. healthy, sustainable communities where all basic This report summarizes the current state of needs are within easy walking distance along active transportation, local barriers to greater Local surveys show that there is community adoption of active modes of travel, programs interest in walking and biking more6. Indeed, that could address these barriers, and the local the majority of respondents were interested gaps in programming that could be addressed in walking and biking to destinations but had with active transportation hubs. Potential sites concerns about these modes of transportation. and partners for such hubs are identified and Many of these concerns relate to local barriers to recommendations are made for how to develop active transportation that fall into the categories full time and part time active transportation hubs of infrastructure, skills and knowledge, and social in Waterloo Region. Supporting documentation is norms. As municipalities continue to invest in the found in the appendices. infrastructure that supports walking and biking, Ultimately, active transportation hubs have active transportation hubs can address the skills, the potential to support a great number of knowledge and social barriers. WaterlooRegion residents in choosing walking, Two types of active transportation hubs are cycling and other active ways of getting to their proposed in this report. Full time hubs have destination. A shift that will not only help us meet regularhours and drop in programs that our climate goals, but will also bring people and generally include DIY bike repair. These are partners together to build stronger communities. ideally situated in partner facilities with strong ties to the community. They should be in dense neighbourhoods with many destinations close by. The second type of active transportation hubs
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 05 2.0 CURRENT STATE OF ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION IN WATERLOO REGION EXHIBIT 3.6: WATERLOO REGION ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION NETWORK (2018) 2.1 - ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE There are currently over 300 km of bike lanes across the Region and nearly 1,000 km of active transportation facilities7. The map below shows the current (2018) active transportation network. The Region and all three Cities have plans to increase the number and connectivity of bike lanes and active transportation facilities in the coming years. Although not the focus of this report, the townships are also interested in promoting active transportation. See Appendix A for more details. 2.2 - MUNICIPAL ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION PLANS The Region of Waterloo and the Cities of Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo all have transportation plans with proposals to increase the active transportation infrastructure, make a more connected network across the cities and the region, and make these facilities attractive to people of all ages and abilities. See Appendix A for descriptions Note: The active transportation network in this exhibit only includes regionally-managed corridors. of key strategies, action items, and implementation measures in the transportation master plans that relate directly to active transportation.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 06 2.3 ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION MODE SHARE 2.4 ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION ATTITUDES Recent census and local transportation survey Attitudes and interest in active transportation data clearly show that only a small fraction (5- can be categorized into four groups: 9%) of Waterloo Region residents walk and cycle ● The fearless and strong use active to work8 , 9. Yet nearly a third spent less than 15 transportation regularly, they will go minutes commuting or travelled less than 5 km: nearly anywhere at any time under their travel times and distances that are generally own power; accessible to active forms of commuting. In ● The enthused and confident will general, many residents (25%) are choosing to consider active transportation for many walk for trips less than 2 km but few (
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 07 Results from ClimateActionWR’s survey showed a much larger percentage of respondents were ‘no way no how’ for biking for both the general public and low income/minority groups (32% and 35% respectively). The majority of respondents agree that active transportation is good for physical and mental health; good for the environment; they feel safe walking near their home; and they worry about their safety when walking/biking/wheeling near busy roads. Fearless & Strong Enthused & Confident Figure 2 Attitudes toward cycling and walking. Sourced Interested but Concerned No Way No How from the Alternative transportation modes study: report offindings 201714. 2.5 ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION AND DEMOGRAPHICS The primary target population for active transportation hubs are those that are low income, immigrants/ newcomers, and minority groups. The following table shows the 2016 census data related to these categories for the Region of Waterloo, and the Cities of Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo15. Low income cut off after taxes (LICO-AT)16 is used for the low-income category. Characteristic Region of Waterloo City of Cambridge City of Kitchener City of Waterloo Low Income 7% 6% 8% 11% Immigrant 23% 20% 26% 25% Visible Minority 19% 16% 22% 26% Table 1: Local census data for low income, immigrant and visible minority populations. Infrastructure Barriers This report focusses on non-infrastructure barriers to active transportation as the hubs described here are designed to address these. However, access to bike lanes, trails, signage and bike parking facilities can also be major barriers to choosing active modes of travel. Communication and collaboration with both Regional and City governments can maximize the impacts of hub programs and infrastructure investments. In 2016, for communities 100,000-500,000, the LICO-AT was roughly $18,000-$46,000, depending on family size. 16
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 08 3.0 LOCAL BARRIERS TO ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION Five major non-infrastructure barriers to cycling and four such barriers to walking in Waterloo Region were identified through our active transportation survey, the Alternative Transportation Modes Study17, the Transportation Tomorrow Survey18, a literature search, and conversations with community groups. This process was guided by the Building Bike Culture Beyond Downtown report and the resulting barriers are outlined below. 3.1 BARRIERS TO CYCLING Long distances and travel times between Safety concerns destinations Safety is listed as a top barrier to cycling in many Long distances and long travel times to local surveys22 , 23. Safety concerns often relate to destinations has been identified as a significant road design and traffic volumes. However, safety barrier to active transportation19 , 20. Yet, as noted concerns may also relate to skills and confidence in section 2, residents very rarely choose to cycle on the road. With skills training and practice, even for very short distances of less than 5 km cyclists can learn to anticipate driver behaviour, that would take an average cyclist less than 20 send clear signals to other road users, choose minutes to complete. safer routes, and navigate busier roads safely and confidently. Perceptions of a trip’s distance and the effort involved in traveling by bike can be overestimated by those who are unaccustomed to biking. An Irish study showed that passive commuters overestimated the distance between home and school by an average of 100% while active commuters were able to accurately estimate the distance travelled21. Infrastructure Barriers This report focusses on non-infrastructure barriers to active transportation as the hubs described here are designed to address these. However, access to bike lanes, trails, signage and bike parking facilities can also be major barriers to choosing active modes of travel. Communication and collaboration with both Regional and City governments can maximize the impacts of hub programs and infrastructure -investments.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 09 Transporting cargo at local social agencies suggest that this stigma is also present in Waterloo Region. Some suggested Bikes typically do not come with storage that targeting some low income residents with spaces and utilitarian trips often require room cycling programs could reinforce the stigma and for personal items, shopping or even children. unfairly ask those least responsible for emissions Baskets, saddlebags, child carriers, trailers and to make the greatest sacrifices. Messaging should cargo bikes are available to help address this also be mindful of the fact that for some, active issue. Even with these, the storage space may be transportation is a financial necessity, not a choice. inadequate, the added weight may increase the effort and time needed to reach a destination, or Family bike rides, however, are viewed as a there may be additional concerns about safety manifestation of good parenting among all with cargo on board. Social norms may also income groups26. While these trips are generally inhibit the use of cargo-carrying equipment. recreational, they may help to raise the profile of cycling, build cycling skills and confidence, and Social norms open the door to utilitarian family trips. In our society, driving is the default way to get to Access to affordable bikes and bike repair destinations: it is the social norm. It can take time and effort to shift from using a personal The ClimateActionWR Active Transportation vehicle as the default mode of transportation for Survey (see appendix B for details) showed that all travel. However, for some, a shift to active close to a quarter of respondents did not own a transportation may be hampered by social bike. Not affording a bike was a reason for 16% stigmas. Indeed, for low income and minority of the general population but 37% of the target groups, riding a bike can suggest a failure to population. In conversations with community afford a personal vehicle and the need to resort groups working with our target populations, to what may be considered a childish means of access to low cost bikes was also noted as a travel24. A Toronto study reported that cycling barrier, with few options available for adult bikes. is also viewed as unfeminine and a symbol Inability to store a bike was also a barrier. Close of poverty25. The ClimateActionWR active to ten percent of all respondents noted that their transportation survey showed that just under bike/scooter/skateboard was in need of repairs. 40% of respondents agree that “people who are like me do not bike or wheel”, which may include concerns about stigma. Conversations with staff
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 10 3.2 BARRIERS TO WALKING Long travel times Surveys show that distances and/or the time it Sedentary lifestyles and a car culture mean that takes to get to destinations are major barriers to more adults are in poor physical condition and choosing to walk27 , 28. Nearly a quarter of short this has long-term health consequences. Walking trips under 2 km are walked in Waterloo region, is a simple, inexpensive, and effective way to a distance that takes 25 minutes for an average improve health conditions33, promote healthy walker29. Far fewer residents walk for trips that aging34, and reduce car dependence. are 2-5 km (2.4% of trips). The employed may be more likely to cite time poverty as a barrier Social norms/lack of interest to walking30. As with cycling, travel times may Work in the United Kingdom has shown that for be overestimated by those who typically travel many, walking is not seen as a normal means of by personal vehicle. Pedestrian pathways can everyday utilitarian travel and this limits the allow walkers to travel a shorter route to their perception of walking as a viable option for destination than a comparable trip by car. getting around35. Our survey showed that 30-40% of respondents agree that “people who are like Transporting cargo me do not walk to get around”. This may reflect Difficulties carrying things while walking is physical abilities, but it may also reflect social another major barrier identified by local surveys. norms and ingroup/outgroup identification. In general, walkers are limited by what they are Although no local research on social stigmas able to comfortably carry on their person. Walking associated with walking is available, it is likely may therefore only be a viable mode choice for that some of the same stigmas associated with simple shopping trips or for destinations that do cycling may also exist for walking if it is perceived not require extra baggage. Carts are available to as an alternative to driving transport groceries and other items but use of these may have negative social stigmas, require storage space, take extra energy to push, and can be cumbersome to use. Exhaustion or health barriers Walking even short distances can be exhausting for those who are not in good physical condition or have mobility challenges. Local surveys show that physical exhaustion is among the top barriers to walking for all but the fearless and strong31. Many of these survey respondents are older and retired. Populations that are low income, middle class and/or unemployed are more likely to experience health barriers to walking32.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 11 4.0 PROGRAMMING TO ADDRESS BARRIERS Programming that will be successful in increasing active transportation mode share for utilitarian trips under 5 km must change people’s transportation habits. Behavioural change research36 suggests that it is important to first target populations that are contemplating or preparing for change. Next, individual barriers must be addressed in a way that includes social support for behavioural change. Social support includes fun and inclusive face-to-face interactions that encourage and reinforce positive changes. Commitment strategies, feedback opportunities, and incentives can further promote sustained behavioural change. As municipal governments continue to invest in physical active transportation infrastructure, active transportation hub programs can offer skills and knowledge supports, social supports, Figure 2. Cycling adoption theory cycle and address social norms. The table below shows how the barriers identified in section 3 can be addressed using these approaches. These proposed programs should be developed with partner groups who have strong positive relationships with their clients. Ultimately, it is the clients themselves who can best identify what supports they both need and want.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 12 Barrier Skills/Knowledge Supports Social Supports Social Norm Programming Physical Supports Takes Too Long/Too Trip planning Group rides/walks Loaner e-bikes Far (Overestimating Time/Distance) Safety Concerns Adult training workshops Group rides/walks (e.g. CANBIKE) Buddy system (to build confidence) Transporting Items Education campaign on Education/awareness Loaner e-bikes carrying baggage campaigns with images of people with carriers Social Norms Target parents as biking as Offer programs to Education/awareness a family is generally viewed different groups campaign using images of a positively e.g. churches, diversity of people cycling/ community centers walking Finding a champion from target populations Physically Exhausting/ Buddy programs Education/awareness Health Barriers Group walking/ campaigns using images of cycling programs all types of people on bikes aimed at people with low physical fitness Access to Bikes, Bike DIY bike repair Access to low cost Repair Mobile bike repair refurbished bikes Earn a bike Table 2 How the local barriers to active transportation can be addressed with programs that fall under the categories of skills/knowledge supports, social supports, social norm programming, and physical supports. 4.1 PROGRAM DESCRIPTIONS The following describe the different types of Markham Cycles and Scarborough Cycles have active transportation programs that could be successfully operated out of a mid-sized shipping offered by active transportation hubs. Some of container. These can also require significant these programs already exist in our communities trained staff and volunteer time to guide DIY but could be expanded, and some are new but repairs and to disassemble unusable bikes for have been successful elsewhere. spare parts. DIY bike repair facilities are an affordable and empowering way to help cyclists fix and maintain their bikes. These facilities require significant programming and storage space, although
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 13 Recycle Cycles in Kitchener and the University Safe cycling/walking workshops can include of Waterloo Bike Centre offer DIY bike repair learning to ride, skills training, instruction on road facilities, although the latter only serves University rules, safe road riding training, information on of Waterloo students and staff. Recycle Cycles all-weather cycling, bike maintenance, carrying has a waiting list for volunteers eager to help cargo with a bike, guided bike rides, and more. but struggles with limited storage space and These can be offered to the public in general or the volunteer hours needed to refurbish or may target certain underserved populations such disassemble donated bikes. as women, minorities, newcomers, or parents. These workshops can take place outside and Mobile bike repair programs can set up may be offered by instructors with special training at events and neighbourhood sites to offer (e.g. registered CAN-BIKE instructors). Online affordable bike repair services. These programs e-learning modules are also available through require storage space for a cargo bike or e-bike, CAN-BIKE. tools, and access to affordable spare parts (e.g. from disassembled bikes that are not Cycling into the Future provides comprehensive roadworthy). Trained staff and/or volunteer time bike training for students in Waterloo Region depends on the scope of the program. through the school system. Training is designed to be inclusive of all children and includes road Kitchener Bike Rescue started mobile bike rules and safety; bike tune-ups; tire repair; rodeo repairs in the summer of 2020, operating out of riding; road riding; assessment; and learn to Victoria Park in Kitchener and various community ride. In 2019, they reached 1243 students in 17 centres in the cities of Kitchener and Waterloo. schools; distributed 179 bikes and 195 helmets; Their programs are limited by available volunteer and helped 75 first time riders. They are planning hours and they are currently in need of further to develop parent-child cycling workshops and funding and storage space. have piloted projects to support walking for Gr Earn a bike is a program where individuals from 3-4 students. low income households are taught to refurbish Recycle Cycles in Kitchener has offered bike donated bikes and, through their volunteer hours, repair workshops for general and target audiences. earn a refurbished bike of their own. These are generally offered at sites that already have DIY bike repair facilities but require significant trained staff or volunteer time for mentorship. Scarborough Cycles runs an 8-week earn a bike workshop program that had 80 youth (under 14 years old) and 50 regular participants in 201937 .
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 14 Several local optimist clubs, bike shops and other Buddy programs match an avid walker or cyclist organizations arrange bike rodeo events in with someone who is interested in exploring Waterloo North, Southwest Kitchener, and in walking or cycling. The buddies plan regular outings community centres across Cambridge. These to destinations in their neighbourhood while building annual events include bike tune-ups, safety training confidence in navigating the roads and paths safely. and bike skills training, and they are well attended. These face-to-face interactions can strengthen commitment to a change in travel choices. Guided bike rides/walks help pedestrians and cyclists gain the skills and confidence to safely Scarborough’s Bike Host program targets navigate their neighbourhood. These may be newcomers to Canada who practice safe cycling most effective when conducted in a person’s own skills, practice their English, and learn about civic neighbourhood where they can become familiar engagement all while exploring their new with local routes and destinations within their community with a supportive mentor. In 2016, 37 range. Group rides can also help to build people completed the Bike Host program after supportive relationships, challenge social which an average of 31% of participants’ daily norms, and provide the encouragement and trips were cycled and 92% would recommend the accountability needed to develop new habits. program to friends and family. It can be particularly effective to offer targeted Loaner e-bikes and cargo bikes offer potential tours: family bikes rides, women only bike rides, cyclists the opportunity to test out e-bikes and walking tours for people with low fitness levels, cargo bikes before investing in one of their own. For and others. many, e-bikes may be the solution for trips that are Recycle Cycles has offered monthly group bike too long or too arduous on a regular bike. E-bikes rides starting from downtown Kitchener. Cycling also have great potential for helping seniors stay into the Future’s programs target the entire grade active as they age38, and helping people with health 4-5 population in Waterloo Region and include challenges shift to a healthier lifestyle39. Cargo bikes road-riding tours of neighbourhoods around are a great investment for those who are committed specific schools. to cycling but are limited by an inability to transport cargo and/or children. The Walking School Bus program supports groups of elementary students in walking Markham Cycles has partnered with a local to school accompanied by adult volunteers library to loan out standard, cargo, tandem, Kitchener has 9 participating elementary schools, recumbent, and ebikes using a library card. the city of Waterloo has 5 and there are no participating schools in Cambridge.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 15 Educational and awareness campaigns are travel behaviour. Since 2004, they have worked media campaigns about active transportation with 40 neighbourhoods, reduced over 5 million that target a broad audience. They may km of drive alone trips, and saved over 1,500 provide information on topics such as road tonnes of associated greenhouse gases. sharing or navigating traffic circles; they can Trip planning maps and apps can help users increase awareness of programs offered in the plan out the best routes to their destinations community; and they can help to change social and estimate total travel times. These can also norms. To combat stereotypes and promote highlight supportive features such as secure bike cycling by a diversity of residents, it is important parking, bike repair stations, and connections to that people of all ages, fitness levels, ethnicities public transportation. Users may also be able to and incomes see images of people they can choose routes based on their comfort levels on identify with in these campaigns. different types of roads and trails. BikeWR has run the following region-wide The Region of Waterloo and all three cities have campaigns: Who is a Cyclist?; How to Navigate bike and trail maps, and BikeWR also has maps a Pedestrian Crossover; Bright On!; and Thumbs on its website. Google Maps and other mapping Up, WR. programs can also help with route planning and travel times but generally do not include supportive CycleWR is running a region-wide campaign features. No trip planning apps specifically designed called “Discover your Superpower: Walking and for Waterloo Region were found. Wheeling to School”. A high profile active transportation champion Commitment strategies ask the user to make a can be very effective at promoting behavioural public commitment to a change in behaviour for a changes and changing social norms within certain time, often after they have participated in their community. Even everyday citizens can an event that models or introduces that behaviour be effective champions of active transportation change. Prompts and incentives can be used to within their circle of family and friends: they may reinforce the commitment. Studies have shown just need some extra encouragement and support that once the new behaviour has been sustained to start a conversation. for a period of time, often months40, it is more likely to lead to lasting behavioural changes41. As a volunteer BYCS bicycle mayor for Waterloo, Arcy Canumay plans to work with community TravelWise in Waterloo Region is a workplace stakeholders to make Waterloo one of the leading program that has offered prizes for participating in cycling cities in Canada. bike to work and winter walk to work challenges. King County in Washington State operates a community-based social marketing campaign called In Motion that involves information, action commitments, prompts and incentives to change
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 16 Fort Collins, Colorado has a Bicycle Ambassador 4.2 PROGRAM EVALUATION Program where residents can teach classes, participate at events, report infrastructure opportunities, and lead by example. In 2020, 110 Active transportation hub programs can be bicycle ambassadors connected with 1,604 evaluated using the following metrics: community members at events and in courses. ● Number of participants served; ● Number of participants who would Amplifying the impact. While each of these recommend the program to others; programs can be effective in increasing active ● Number of volunteer and staff hours transportation mode share, they are likely to have required; and the greatest impact if the programs are ● Program costs. coordinated and promoted together across the region. Their impacts can also be amplified by The active transportation mode share impacts integrating them with infrastructure development, of active transportation hubs can be estimated transit plans, policies that restrict car use, based on: public health planning, and other related ● Travel mode share surveys, such as the developments42. Transportation Tomorrow Survey, ● Census data on commute mode share, and ● Trail usage counters43 placed on trails and bike lanes near the hub before and after programming. The climate mitigation impacts of active transportation hubs can be estimated based on: ● Changes in travel mode share for short trips and municipal models for community greenhouse gas emissions44.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 17 4.3 GAPS IN EXISTING ACTIVE supports are located in the downtown which can be difficult to access for those living on the TRANSPORTATION PROGRAMMING other side of the expressway. The best approach to promoting active transportation in Kitchener Waterloo Region may be to engage an Active Transportation Hub Coordinator who can promote, expand, Across the region, there is a need to promote, enhance existing programs, and establish part expand, and enhance existing programming to time active transportation hubs in underserved reach underserved communities and populations. neighbourhoods. The part time hubs would provide One notable example is high school students space and support for existing programs and who generally live within active transportation develop additional programs that fill service gaps. distance of their school but have few supports to Community centres have expressed interest in encourage this mode of travel. Transportation partnering to offer active transportation programs. habits established in the teen years can have lasting impacts on travel choices. Waterloo Cambridge The City of Waterloo enjoys the highest walking and cycling commuting mode share in the region. Cambridge is underserved by existing active The low cost bike repair facilities at the University transportation programming and major roads of Waterloo are aimed at students and staff, make it difficult to access programs offered while those at Recycle Cycles may be too far in Kitchener and Waterloo. The city lacks an or otherwise difficult for Waterloo residents to accessible and low cost bike repair facility access. There are also four bike shops in the city Such a facility would ideally be part of an and many of the active transportation supports active transportation hub that offers a variety located in Kitchener are accessible to those of programs including those listed above. living in Waterloo. Community groups working Cambridge’s population is concentrated in three in the City of Waterloo have noted that there is main areas: Hespeler, Preston, and Galt. A full an unmet need for affordable bike repairs and time hub will therefore have a limited client base cycling supports. However, there are very few unless it also offers programming at events and potential hub locations that would be accessible supports part time hubs at partner locations to the majority of residents of Waterloo. An throughout the city. This programming should be Active Transportation Hub Coordinator could offered on a predictable and regular basis to allow seek opportunities to promote, expand and positive relationships to form. enhance existing programs in underserved neighbourhoods while developing programs to fill Kitchener service gaps and seeking suitable sites for a full Kitchener has many active transportation time or part time hub. supports, including what is in essence a bike hub: Recycle Cycles. These supports, however, are in very high demand and often serve only a segment of the population. Furthermore, many of these
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 18 4.4 ESTIMATED MATERIAL COSTS Program Item Estimated Cost Active Transportation Hub Shipping container45 - midsized, ~$300046 unmodified, delivered Tent or shelter with branding $1,000-1,50047 DIY Bike Repair/Earn a Bike Bike stand and tools $300-$500/station48 Spare parts $1,80049 Storage space varies Mobile Bike Repair Bike stand and tools $300-$500/station50 Spare parts $1,80051 E-cargo bike $4,000-$7,00052 Cargo bike $1,000-$2,50053 Storage space Varies Utility trailer for storage space $6,500+54 Loaner E-Bikes E-bike $2,700-$4,000/bike55 Storage space varies Table 3 Estimated material costs for active transportation hubs. All Programs First aid kits/safety materials $250-$35056 Promotional materials varies City of Waterloo zoning does not currently allow shipping containers on city properties. 45
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 19 5.0 TARGET NEIGHBOURHOODS 5.1 EVALUATING POTENTIAL TARGET Low walking and cycling mode share are assessed using: NEIGHBOURHOODS ● Walking commuting modal share from 2016 Census; A target neighbourhood has high active ● Cycling commuting modal share from transportation potential but low walking and 2016 Census; cycling mode share, and contains a high ● % walking primary mode share from 2016 proportion of underserved populations (low Transportation Tomorrow Survey; and income, immigrants/newcomers, and ethnic/ ● % cycling primary mode share from 2016 religious minorities). Guided by the Building Bike Transportation Tomorrow Survey. Culture Beyond Downtown report, several maps were used to identify target neighbourhoods. High proportion of underserved populations Links to some of the maps are included in the list are based on: below and the remaining maps can be found in Appendix C. ● Prevalence of low income based on low income cutoff after tax (LICO-AT) from High active transportation potential can be 2016 Census; assessed using the following data: ● Immigrant as a percentage of total population from 2016 Census; ● Cycling potential maps from the ● Visible minority as a percentage of total municipality based on existing road population from 2016 Census; and network connectivity, land use mix, ● Equity maps from the municipality based on permeability, topography (available for percentage of youth, seniors, immigrants, Cambridge57 and Kitchener only, see indigenous, low income (available for Kitchener Cycling and Trails Master Plan); Cambridge58 and Kitchener only, see ● % of households without a car from the Kitchener Cycling and Trails Master Plan). 2016 Transportation Tomorrow Survey; ● % of trips 0-2 km (walking and biking The factors above can help to identify distance) and 2-5 km (biking distance) from neighbourhoods that are likely to benefit from the 2016 Transportation Tomorrow Survey; active transportation programs. Interest from ● Located within the City of Cambridge active the target community is the most important transportation priority area to support factor, however, any community that expresses rapid transit, found in the Moving interest should, if feasible, be offered programs. Cambridge report; Conversely, a neighbourhood that resists the ● Walk score map; and introduction of active transportation programming ● Population density from 2016 Census is a poor candidate no matter what its rating. (high population density areas have greater total active transportation potential). Cambridge’s cycling potential map is not publicly available. 57 Cambridge’s cycling equity map is not publicly available. 58
Active Transportation Hubs active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 20 5.2 TARGET NEIGHBOURHOODS IN WATERLOO REGION Figure 4 shows the locations of 11 target neighbourhoods and shows how each is rated using the factors listed above. Four of these neighbourhoods are potential targets for full time locations, with the goal of having one in the City of Cambridge and one in the City of Waterloo: these are Elgin Park/North Galt, Preston Central, Central Waterloo, and Lakeshore Village/Sunnydale. The remaining neighbourhoods, including all identified Sa King St N wm neighbourhoods in Kitchener, are targets for part time active transportation hubs. Appendix D contains Lobsinger L Active Transportation Hubs ill rE in e Rd ld D detailed maps of each neighbourhood showing 2 km (walking distance) and 5 km (cycling distance) radii from e thfi Nor its core, Be n key destinations, and existing plus planned trails and bike lanes. jam in Rd LAKESHORE VILLAGE /SUNNYDALE tE ge S WATERLOO 85 Brid CENTRAL Active Transportation Hubs We Er bs We be le v Rd r il F is s tm St N St oria ch N Vict er- ou GRAND Ha nt Rd King llm W St W RIVER an Rd ut h DOWNTOWN Rd ss N VICTORIA HILLS K o dN WESTVALE /PAULANDER R d 34 Sa ay gton R King St N irw Wellin wm d ErbL'os bRsinger L Fa Fo u ill rE in e ntai Rd St S ld D oria ve R d n St N V ict Gro W HESPELER e Rd M a p le thfi la d n VANIER/ High Nor 7/8 ROCKWAY Sa King St N wm Benj Lobsinger L ill rE am i n R d in e Rd tS ld D tt aw aS COUNTRY e LAKESHORE VILLAGE thfi O HILLS ush R d Nor /SUNNYDALE Pineb Hespe Bleams Rd Benj am i n R d tE ge S WATERLOO 85 Brid le Ho LAKESHORE VILLAGE CENTRAL r Rd CENTRAL m St S Tru /SUNNYDALE Wa er PRESTON We tson Er ss ta i n E bs Blvd Rd FoBuridnge St ler We be le v Rd WSATERLOO r il F is s ron tN Rd 85 tm St Hu oriC a ENTRAL Rd ch Clyde N Vict We Er er- ou bs We GRAND be le Ha nt v Rd Rd r King il F is ELGIN PARK s tm tN St ia S llm W ch RR St W or N IVER Vict er- NORTH GALT ou an GRAND Rd Ha nt ut h Kin DOWNTOWN d gS llm Rd W tW Rss IVER an Rd N VICTORIA HILLS DdOWNTOWN K ut h o Rd Rd N ss undee N /PAULANDER VICTORIA HILLS 401y R K 34 WESTVALE o New D N d W /PAULANDER wa yR d gton R d ESTVALE i r a Wellin gto n Rd 34 Erb's R a irw Wellin Fo u Erb's R d F Fa Fo u ntai ntai St S oria St S oria d Rd n St N V ict ve R ro ve n St N V ict dW VANIER/ Maple Gro p le G HESPELER Rd W VANIER/ High l a n dR HMESPELER a Dun la d ekR n 7/8 High RdOCKWAY das 7/8 ROCKWAY Cedar Cre St S tS t aw aS COUNTRY Ot HILLS ush R d tS Pineb a wa S COUNTRY Hespe t Bleams Rd Ot HILLS ush R d Pineb le Ho CENTRAL r Rd m St S Hespe Tru Wa er Bleams Rd tson PRESTON ss Blvd t ai n Rd Foun ler n Rd Hu r o le Rd H CENTRAL Clyde om r Rd St S Tru Wa er tson PRESTON ELGIN PARK ss Rd Blvd n ta i n NORTH GALT ler Fou n Rd Hu r o Rd u ndee Rd 401 Clyde New D ELGIN PARK ra 2km dius NORTH GALT Dun Rd das Creek St S Rd Cedar undee 401 New D Dun Rd das Creek St S Cedar Map designed by Julie Witmer Custom Map Design, January 2021 Contains information provided by the Regional Municipality of Waterloo under licence ra 2km dius Figure 4 Locations of target neighbourhoods for active transportation hubs. Dark markers show possible targets for full time hubs while pale markers show target neighbourhoods for part time hubs. Map designed by Julie Witmer Custom Map Design, January 2021 Contains information provided by the Regional Municipality of Waterloo under licence ra 2km dius
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 21 Four neighbourhoods (see dark yellow circles) are provide the sites for programs and any necessary targets for full time active transportation hubs. supports. Storage needs may be met on or offsite Finding a partner organization that works in or (many part time hubs may share resources stored near these neighbourhoods is a priority. It may in one site). Partners may include municipalities be necessary to look beyond the borders of the (e.g. parks), community centres, schools, faith neighbourhood to find organizations with strong, communities, cultural community centres, event positive relationships with the target community: planners, major employers, and others. Ideally, hubs have been successful in less ideal locations programs should be offered on a recurring basis but strong partners. (e.g. once a week or month) to provide continuity, reliable access, and to allow supportive Seven neighbourhoods (see pale yellow relationships to form. circles) are targets for part time active transportation hubs. These part time hubs can be temporarily set up in a community to offer active transportation programs targeted to the community’s needs and wants. Potential partners 6.0 PARTNERSHIPS 6.1 EVALUATING POTENTIAL PARTNERS Community active transportation hubs typically Appendix E includes a link to a spreadsheet have multiple partners, each playing different of all local organizations identified throughout roles. These roles may include funding, facilities, this project and guidelines for how they can staff and volunteers, links to the community, and be systematically evaluated for their suitability programming. In return, the active transportation as a partner. Although the ratings for each hub should further the partner organization’s goals characteristic are numerical (0-4), attention or mission: the best and most enduring partnerships should be focused on the ratings for the elements are those in which both parties benefit. that best reflect a hub’s needs rather than the overall score. Active transportation hub General criteria benefits include: All potential partner organizations are rated based ● Promoting physical activity, on mission alignment, staff interest, organizational ● Promoting physical health, strength, opportunities for mutual benefits, and ● Promoting mental health, their history of partnerships. There are a great ● Waste diversion, diversity of organizational goals that may be ● Reducing air pollution, relevant for community active transportation ● Immigrant/newcomer settlement, hubs, see the callout to the right on the benefits of active transportation hubs59.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 22 Funding Facilities Organizations may be able to provide funding Active transportation hubs require facilities to directly or indirectly. Businesses may be able to store materials, repair bikes, and to run programs. provide direct sponsorship for events, startup Initially, many community bike hubs have costs, operational costs, and they may also operated out of shipping containers situated in provide discounts for their products or services. the parking lot of a community partner, another Not for profit organizations can apply for grant option is an enclosed utility trailer as has been funding from a variety of local, provincial, and used by Kitchener’s mobile skate park and the federal sources. A sample list of funding sources Create Waterloo program. They may also rent or can be found in Appendix F. access other indoor and/or outdoor spaces on an as needed basis for programming. Part time hubs Links to the community need onsite programming space and facilities to store resources. Resources and storage facilities All organizations on the potential partner list have may be shared by multiple part time hubs. If links to the community and/or to our target programming includes accepting donated bikes groups. They can help with program for refurbishment or disassembly for spare parts, development, outreach, and promotion of active additional space will be required. Potential facility transportation hub programming and events. partners are rated based on location, space in a building, space for a shipping container. Staff and volunteers An Active Transportation Hub Coordinator is Programming recommended for both full and part time hubs. Their job may include: Programming partners may help in delivering programs and have existing relationships with ● Supporting the promoting, expansion, and target populations. Programs offered by the enhancement of existing programs; community active transportation hub may extend ● Building positive relationships with clients; or enhance programs already being offered by ● Developing and running programs; the partner organization or they may complement ● Seeking new funding and partnerships; existing programming. Potential programming ● Recruiting and training staff and volunteers; and partners are rated based on staff capacity, ● Completing other administrative tasks. access to programming space, and access to One Coordinator may serve multiple hubs. programming resources. Ideally, the Active Transportation Hub Coordinator is an employee of a partner organization to ensure integration into their existing programming but their salary may come from other sources. At the Gateway Bike Hub in North York, for example, staff are employed by non-profit community organizations but funded by City of Toronto Solid Waste Management. Potential staff partnerships are evaluated based on existing staff knowledge, workspace availability, volunteer capacity, and financial capacity.
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 23 6.2 POTENTIAL MAJOR PARTNERS The following organizations have been proportion of low income, minority groups, and approached and have expressed significant newcomers to Canada. They currently operate interest in partnering to develop active a popular supportive walking group and have transportation hubs. Further work is needed to identified a need for services to support cycling. identify an organization that is willing to take the They are open to hosting further programs, lead in developing active transportation hubs. especially if funding were available, but currently Space and facilities are also in high demand for have no suitable hub or storage space. most community organizations, although some The University of Waterloo is a major employer of these organizations have shown a willingness within Waterloo Region with a large student to explore possibilities for use of space or siting population, many of which are low income and of a shipping container. belong to minority groups. The University is a Carizon serves the Waterloo Region with member of TravelWise, has offered cycling a mission to “help families thrive in their programs, and the student association operates communities by strengthening their mental a Bike Centre with bike repair facilities and bike health and wellbeing”. They operate several rentals. The Sustainability Office is interested in small community centres and have hosted having further conversations about active bike programs in the past. They are open to transportation programming. hosting further programs. They are also open Recycle Cycles is a part of The Working Centre, to developing and offering programs if staff and an organization dedicated to using creative action overhead funding were available but have no to build community, address unemployment, and suitable hub or storage space. reduce poverty. They have expressed interest Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank serves in learning more about possible active Cambridge residents and their vision is that transportation hubs but have been unavailable “every person will have access to healthy foods to meet due to pressures related to COVID-19. and opportunities for growth”. They are in the Langs operates in Cambridge and as a mission process of developing a wellness hub that uses is “committed to ensuring that every person in food as a vehicle for programming on health and our neighbourhoods will have a place to call wellness. There may be interest in including active home for health, wellness and community transportation in that programming. At the support”. They operate community hubs that current time, they are strained for space and bring partners together to provide health and challenged by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. social services. They have expressed interest Kitchener Downtown Community Health Centre in exploring how active transportation supports offers primary health care, community health might enhance their programming and what a supports, and a variety of programs to help partnership might look like. clients manage their health. Their clients come from across Kitchener and include a high
active transportation hubs in waterloo region: a research pilot project 24 Community Centres - Community centres can allow municipal governments to learn (CC) typically have strong relationships with directly from community members about their communities and are always seeking new local infrastructure challenges and to ensure programs that meet the needs and interests their active transportation investments work of their clients, they also typically lack storage synergistically with other community supports. space. In Cambridge, Alison Neighbourhood CC One or more of these municipal governments and Greenway Chaplin CC, both near Elgin Park/ also support existing active transportation North Galt, have expressed particular interest in programs through partnerships with Cycling Into active transportation programming. In Kitchener, The Future, BikeWR, Student Transportation Community Centres have expressed interest Services of Waterloo Region (supports School in partnering to provide active transportation Travel Planning), The Working Centre (operates programming in their centres but due to COVID Recycles Cycles), and TravelWise. Members are not currently in a position to explore this of the municipal transportation departments further. In Waterloo, most community centres are and sustainability offices have expressed under construction and are not looking for new interest in active transportation hubs. The programs at this time. Kitchener-Waterloo Joint Services Initiative has been proposed as a possible mechanism for The Region of Waterloo and the Cities of developing hubs that support both cities. Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo all have goals of promoting a transportation mode shift from personal vehicles to active forms of transportation. Active transportation hubs 7.0 RECOMMENDATIONS 1. Find one or more partners interested in taking 2. Reach out to Waterloo Region municipalities the lead in developing active transportation hubs, to explore how they can support active using section 6 as a guide to evaluating partners. transportation hubs in their communities. a. ClimateActionWR may be the best situated 3. Plan for a mix of full time and part time to find such a partner. active transportation hubs. Full time hubs have b. Promoting, expanding, and enhancing regular hours and drop in programs that often existing programs should be a key role of include bike repair facilities. Part time hubs are any active transportation hub. Promoting and communities that host active transportation enhancing existing programs may include programs on a regular basis. finding additional funding or volunteers, 4. Prioritize finding facilities for full time hubs marketing, coordinating the delivery of in the cities of Cambridge and Waterloo, and multiple programs to a community, assistance facilities to store part time hub resources in all with program development and delivery, and three cities. Consider using a shipping container if other supports. indoor space is not available.
You can also read