BACCC asked all municipal candidates for their views on environmentally-friendly transportation options, presenting them with these three questions. Views expressed are solely those of the candidates and do not reflect the views of BACCC or its members. All responses have been reviewed to ensure appropriateness and relevance to the questions posed. We encourage you to make an informed decision by researching your local candidates.
Hamilton Mayoral Candidate Andrea Horwath
From the recommendations in BACCC’s Options for Travel report, which would be your top priority to enact to ensure safe, reliable, convenient and equitable transportation options?
All of these recommendations are extremely thoughtful and important, if elected mayor I would consider all of them in public transit planning.
That said, Hamiltonians need to be able to get around all parts of our city – whether that’s to and from work, into our shopping, entertainment and arts districts, or to access our natural and recreational features as conveniently and affordably as possible. Our city has a number of completely unserved transit areas — including business areas that are desperate for workers, as you note in your report — and many underserved routes.
In order to truly provide access to safe, reliable, convenient and equitable transportation between all of these communities, our priority has to be improving access to public transit with more routes and improved frequency. Recommendations 1, 5 address this priority.
If environmentally friendly transportation options are not convenient, residents will be less likely to choose those options over driving.
What steps would you take to ensure environmentally friendly transportation options are convenient?
There is no doubt that public transit needs to be more accessible in Hamilton. My commitment is to never stop expanding Hamilton public transit. I have committed in my action plan to continue to champion the building of the LRT, to expand public transit routes and frequency to all the communities in Hamilton and to transition to a low carbon fleet.
We will build interconnected bike lanes and more pedestrian friendly routes that reduce risk and increase convenience. I have committed to a plan to make walking and cycling safe to encourage more people to travel this way. (More details in the next response).
Additionally I will work to ensure Hamilton is included in GO Transit’s two-way all-day Regional Express Rail network getting commuters to and from Hamilton with safe, frequently accessible and staffed Hamilton stations.
Environmentally friendly transportation needs to be perceived as safe in order to be viewed as a viable option.
What steps would you take to ensure all users feel safe when using all transportation methods?
I will champion the ongoing work at City Hall to implement Hamilton’s Vision Zero action plan that began in 2019, Furthering our progress on improving roadway safety through evaluation, engineering, enforcement, and engagement initiatives including new speed cushion locations, new pedestrian crossovers, designating community safety zones, and more traffic signage.
I will work with city staff to increase snow clearing on sidewalks and bike lanes to increase safe usage through the winter months.
I have also committed to undertake a comprehensive consultation to renew Hamilton’s Transit plan beyond 2025, which will include plans to address the important issues around rider safety and comfort that are addressed in the Options for Travel report.