Gertie’s a Go! Islanders Vote “YES” to Transit

The results of today’s vote are in.  Residents and property owners on Gabriola, Mudge and De Courcey Islands have said a resounding “Yes!” to their community bus GERTIE and transit in their community. As reported previously in the post Taking GERTIE to the Polls, Islanders were voting today on whether to fund Gabriola’s pilot community bus system on an ongoing… Read more »

Taking Gertie to the Polls: BC’s Next Transit Referendum (& One You’ve Likely Never Heard Of)

Gertie lawn sign

We all know what happened with that rather unfortunate (insert additional adjectives of your choice here) transit referendum that occurred last spring in Metro Vancouver. What you may not be aware of is that there’s another transit referendum happening right now on Gabriola Island, BC, a 20 minute ferry ride from downtown Nanaimo in BC’s Gulf Islands archipelago. Between now… Read more »

Why Your “Just Three Minutes” Request Makes Transit Planners Twitchy

“Oh, but it’s only adds on another three minutes,” is one of those phrases I’ve heard over and over again during my time as a transit planner and scheduler.  And like some evil Pavlovian trigger, I can’t help but get bad flashback twitches every time I hear it. The changes that folks request that “will only take three minutes” sound… Read more »

When Activist Worldviews Collide

      4 Comments on When Activist Worldviews Collide

Ever experienced a community process where you shared a common objective with others but your approaches seemed worlds apart and maybe even resulted in strife and conflict? Such a situation often seems all too common and can be demoralizing.  Even more so, conflict over styles of approach has real implications in terms of our ability to make change happen. So,… Read more »

The Little Things That Make a City

      No Comments on The Little Things That Make a City

I was struck by how little things truly make a difference in a city at our neighbourhood barbershop this week. Under its previous owner, the Cook Street Barbershop had become grimy and seemingly unloved.  Walking past on the way to the grocery store next door, there was never a reason to pause.  The windows were dirty, the inside looked grim… Read more »

Christmas on Two Feet

      No Comments on Christmas on Two Feet

I’ve been watching with interest Chris Bruntlett’s Twitter posts (@modacitylife) and facebook page of crowd sourced photos of Christmas trees being carried home by bike. What I like most about Chris’s posts are that they are bringing visibility to the different choices that people are making in their lives in terms of how they get around and the meaning they… Read more »

The Three Community Characteristics of Highly Successful Transit Systems

Think quick!  What are the most important elements of a really great transit system?! Chances are if you just answered that in your head right now, you might have said things like: frequency, directness, reliability, easy fare payment, easy to use and understand information, consistency, comfort or safety. Some of you might have answered “convenience,” which I would then have… Read more »

When Your New Prime Minister Rides a 40′ Limo

Working as I do in the field of transit, it’s been an interesting few weeks since Justin Trudeau won the Canadian national election to become the leader of our country.   Transit and spending on civic infrastructure that could help sustainable transportation of all kinds were two big themes of his campaign, and a bus was also part of his first… Read more »

Five Great Books on Cities and Community for Younger Citizens

This post is a love letter to my five all time favourite kid’s books about cities, neighbourhoods and community. Well worn and ragged, each has been well tested at my family’s house and and are the kind of picture books that can be enjoyed over and over again by younger citizens and their older fans alike. Important to me, none… Read more »

This Just In: Sinister Mime Plot Creating Transit Havoc

Mime Bus

Disassociated Press, BIG RIVER, BC: A rogue gang of sinister mimes is being implicated in an evil invisible force field plot that has left a trail of passed up passengers, mashed feet and hoarse bus drivers in transit systems across North America. Not since the all-mime population of the small European hamlet of Kopfschmerzen accidentally trapped itself in a 20-foot-tall… Read more »