Election 2011: Michael Charrois

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Dear Heather

Thanks for the questions and your patience with my responses. I got married in September and just returned from our three-week journey to the capitals of Europe. From the Netherlands through Germany, Czech, Poland and Austria, I rode a lot of public transit and saw an awful lot of bikes.Dedicated bike lanes everywhere (a lot of foresight and planning goes into that network) and affordable bike rentals at the transit hubs. I definitely support cycling as a mode of transportation and the City should increase the amount of safe, dedicated, separated bike lanes. In answer to your questions:

1. What modes of transportation do you normally use within Metro Vancouver? Do you ever use a bike for transportation in your municipality?

Seabus when I work at 200 Granville Street; when working on location or teaching in Coquitlam I travel by car; I only ride my bike recreationaly.

2. How would you support and encourage cycling for transportation to promote healthy and livable communities?

I definitely support cycling as a mode of transportation and the City should increase the amount of safe, dedicated, separated bike lanes. The space for cycling lanes should be integrated into all street and neighbourhood planning.

3. Do you think the current level of funding for cycling in your municipality is adequate?


4. What would you do to ensure a sustainable and adequate source of cycling funding during your term in office?

Advocate. promote and pressure.

5. What is your level of interest in a public bike-share system integrated with the transit system?

Very high interest- I just got back from Vienna where I have seen a very successful example of this system.

6. What role do you think the municipality has in supporting and promoting cycling education for children, cyclists and motorists?

Cycling is a positive activity on so many levels; a healthy mode of environmental friendly transport. A lot more needs to be done to ensure safety including separation from other vehicular traffic.

P.S. I have always loved the idea of the Bike Elevator up Lonsdale. That huge hill up to the plateau has always been one of the worst drawbacks to cycling on the North Shore (after all the rain). Once you're up to the Safeway it's clear sailing, but I always end up walking the bike up Lonsdale; I can't pedal up that hill. I didn't see an example of a Bike Elevator when I was in Europe- but I saw a lot of streetcars. Recently one of our North Van City Councillors was promoting the idea of the return of street car lines up Lonsdale- an excellent idea in my books. If we put bike racks on the streetcars and let the bike riders jump on the streetcar for free at the bottom of Lonsdale, grab their bikes and jump off at the top by the bear sculpture we would have the Bike Elevator.

Michael Charrois


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