City on the right track
I read the article entitled, “Automobile Use Still Dominates” in the May 14 edition of The Morning Star.
I applaud the investment in transit and bicycle paths that Vernon taxpayers have made.
The transit buses to UBCO are full and are keeping many vehicles off the road.
A cyclist can now venture out on marked lanes that give them a fighting chance to survive.
I also applaud the City of Vernon’s public input sessions which focused on residents’ transit, walking and cycling needs.
There are now sidewalks around seniors' facilities and schools which make walking much safer. Adhering to the existing OCP would result in many more people choosing alternatives to the private vehicle.
If all new developments were built in, or very near, the downtown core and were a mix of commercial and residential, people would not have to drive to reach work, daily shopping, dining or entertainment facilities.
New developments would provide housing for singles, young couples, young families and seniors.
Up and down the valley, there are excellent examples of buildings with commercial businesses on the main floor, offices on the second and residential on the next two or three floors.
I was very excited by the vision I saw at Vernon’s public meetings for the downtown core development plan. I hope to see the plan implemented soon.
I know that living downtown works as my mother moved into Orchard Valley Retirement residence downtown when she came to Vernon.
She had a vehicle but rarely used it because she could walk to the grocery store, the doctor and dentist, the drug store and the bank.
She preferred to walk as she enjoyed the exercise and appreciated the cost savings of not maintaining a car.
Many taxpayers can’t afford the costs associated with providing water, sewer and services to developments far from the downtown area.
I believe the City of Vernon is on the right track and must enforce the current OCP. It was created after a great deal of public consultation and expert input and will result in Vernon being a more liveable community with many more walkers, cyclists and transit users.