Red Deer council approves Mobility Playbook

City council has approved a major transportation work plan that paints a balanced vision of cycling, walking, transit and driving in Red Deer.

City council has approved a major transportation work plan that paints a balanced vision of cycling, walking, transit and driving in Red Deer.

The Mobility Playbook was approved by a vote of 7-2 on Monday as a planning tool for future road designs, neighbourhoods, trail systems and transportation.

Councillors Tara Veer and Chris Stephan were opposed. Veer said there’s strength in the plan but she expected a broader vision in such a high-level document and a better vision for drivers and driving infrastructure. The plan is 75 per cent there but she says it falls short in a clear vision of building better roads and infrastructure.

Stephan said the money spent on the study would have been better spent on filling potholes.

Jeremy Bouw, a city divisional strategist, told council they heard a lot about bike lanes, transit, the weather and choice during the public consultation. Bouw said they heard residents wanted a more balanced provision of mobility options. Residents said Red Deer was a place where people drive cars and cars are necessary to get to places quickly and conveniently.

Bouw said they heard drivers and driving should be more reflective in the document.

Based on feedback, the city added a new play or target of creating a balanced network and rewrote a few pages to reflect a more positive role of driving in the document.

In the fall, the city will draft the framework for terms of reference to meet the objectives of the playbook.

Most councillors said the document was moving in the right direction.

Coun. Cindy Jefferies called the planning very much future thinking and a longer term vision.

Council adopted an additional resolution brought forward by Veer for further policy work to be undertaken to respond to vehicular and rail transportation.