1. Do you support re-aligning municipal and regional transportation plans and investments to meet the provincial government’s CleanBC target to “reduce distances travelled in light-duty vehicles by 2030 compared to 2020″?
Absolutely. Plans and targets are necessary, but with my leadership getting the council to unanimously declare a climate emergency and adopt an accelerated Climate Leadership Plan that was bolder than the CleanBC plan, I’ve demonstrated that I have the ‘political will’ to do more than only set aspirations. And I anticipate working with Central Saanich residents, including youth and community organizations, to ensure collaboration and buy-in as I push for this action. I’m happy to share more at, www.zebking.ca.
2. Do you support making the default speed limit 30 km/h for streets without centrelines?
As a councillor, I have helped lead the Council to reduce default speeds successfully, and I continue to work with residents to resolve outstanding issues, including areas without centrelines. I’d love to discuss this further with you at www.zebking.ca.
3. Do you commit to budgeting sufficient funds to accelerate your active transportation plan?
Yes, I see sufficiently budgeting to accelerate the active transportation plan as action on a number of goals. It is part of taking action to address climate change and reduce greenhouse gases, helping people with affordability through transportation choices, and improving healthy communities through active living. Prioritizing an accelerated active transportation plan is a smart investment for our community and region. I’m happy to explain further at www.zebking.ca.
4. Do you support using neighbourhood-wide traffic calming to create low traffic neighbourhoods with much lower traffic volume with quick build materials?
I absolutely love neighbourhoods where people feel safe walking, riding bikes and even encountering equestrians, which is perhaps more familiar to Central Saanich than other municipalities. More connector trails are needed. Each ‘infill’ proposal is an opportunity to make these connections and, too often, is a lost opportunity that won’t come up again after a council approves an application, so we should ensure it is part of the plan at the approval stage. I’m a big supporter of establishing community buy-in by engaging with local Central Saanich residents and visitors around traffic calming that reduces traffic volume. I support action to reduce the need for automobiles while increasing alternative transportation options and ensuring that residents feel heard, respected, and part of this solution-making process. www.zebking.ca
5. How would you support making walking safer and more enjoyable in Central Saanich?
Sidewalks: Central Saanich has sections of sidewalk in front of new developments that abruptly end and have no continuity. We must complete sidewalks throughout the urban containment boundary while extending more soft surface trails outside the boundary. We’ve shown that by working with First Nations and others, we can leverage senior government money to get sidewalks completed, much as was done along Stelly’s Cross Road.
Trails: I’m working with residents to establish more trails across our community, including connector paths between streets that allow walkers to make connections that don’t have to go along roads. Each new proposal within the urban containment boundary is an opportunity to get public right-of-way access connecting roads today or securing the access for a future connection and must be routinely part of the amenities process. I will continue to take action to bring about connector trails and, specifically, long-distance trails across our municipality.
Engagement: Making walking safer and enjoyable must involve neighbourhoods. While consultant reports and plans are fine, neighbourhoods often understand nuances that are otherwise missed. This is why I continue to encourage residents not to wait for public open houses and processes but to organize together through community associations. I’d be happy to discuss further at www.zebking.ca
6. Do you support building a network of all ages and abilities (“AAA”) bike and roll routes throughout Central Saanich?
7. Do you support welcoming people who use wheelchairs and mobility scooters to use all ages and abilities (AAA) bike and roll routes?
Yes, and I support listening to the advice of accessibility advocates and their lived experiences which often improve our community for everyone. I have recently initiated an age-friendly communities grant application that was successfully received, and I now hope to be involved with the work of this community-level team to make sure we identify and resolve barriers that may include routes for all ages and needs. I’d be happy to discuss further at www.zebking.ca
8. Do you support rapidly completing bus lanes at key locations on the Pat Bay Highway for BC Transit’s proposed RapidBus route, as well as effective transit priority measures along all of BC Transit…
Yes, I have long advocated for transit priority lanes and have worked with others to get this done. In meetings with previous BC Minister of Transportation Clare Trevena and staff, I pushed for a bus stop at Mt Newton and Pat Bay highway. Thanks to the collective will of successive Central Saanich councils, this is now underway and will mean that Central Saanich is no longer bypassed by buses going North to South along the Pat Bay highway. I have also called for ‘fare-free transit’ as a realistic climate action and strategy to address the escalating cost of living. Most recently, I championed a fare-free transit resolution at the UBCM that was endorsed by BC municipalities. I welcome further discussion at www.zebking.ca
9. With the court-imposed deadline of March 14, 2023 to keep the Island Rail Corridor intact, how would you support modern rail service for Vancouver Island?
The need to use this corridor for transportation will only increase with time. While the corridor is not part of Central Saanich, it is critically important for the region as growth chokes existing transportation routes. Therefore, all municipalities have an interest in ensuring that this route is kept intact. Central Saanich should be supportive by ensuring this corridor helps the region reduce carbon emissions (reducing automobile use) while providing a safe transportation route. The unfortunate and short-sighted loss of rail lines and rights-of-way that used to exist in Central Saanich and the peninsula should not be repeated elsewhere. I’d be happy to discuss at www.zebking.ca
10. Do you support making transit fares more affordable, both by reducing the cost of passes and individual fares and free or discounted passes for youth, seniors, and people living on low incomes?
I’ve helped lead the calls for fare-free transit with articles and actions, including the most recent resolution to the Union of BC Municipalities that was endorsed by all municipalities calling on the province to start by expanding the existing fare-free program beyond age 12 and under. I believe strongly that eliminating the toll for transit as a climate and affordability action would induce the needed demand leading to increased supply and frequency of buses. This is a win-win for tackling the climate change problem and helps families with affordable transportation choices by removing the barrier of small user fees. Shifting away from the user fees and instead treating public transit as a ‘public good,’ much as we treat public libraries, hospitals other services, will help us move workers to jobs, get more kids to and from home safely and help parents get to appointments while taking meaningful action to address greenhouse gas emissions. The following article relates to my ongoing commitment to this issue, https://www.timescolonist.com/archive/comment-make-public-transit-free-for-all-4683843. I will continue to advocate for fare-free transit and would be pleased to discuss further at www.zebking.ca
11. Do you support removing the requirements for off-street vehicle parking from new and infill developments while adding requirements for car share, EV charging, bike and other micromobilty parking, as well as expanding accessible parking?
Yes, and I believe the community benefits of car sharing, EV charging, bike and other mobility parking and accessible parking are likely to grow in importance and need to include more ideas and options that increase multi-modal transportation and accessibility. I’m enthusiastic about a continuing dialogue around this critical topic at www.zebking.ca.
12. How would you activate and bring more people into public spaces within Central Saanich, including sidewalks, public squares, streets and parks?
Every new development proposal likely has further potential for public spaces, including sidewalks, public squares and sometimes mini-parks. Often securing rights-of-way even where there is not yet a completed connection is overlooked when approving proposals. These rights of way could later become connections if the Council of the day secured a right-of-way. This needs to become standard so that even short connections between streets or access to new public meeting points and parks become standardized rather than only dependent on administrations or councils. In the meantime, I’ll continue to advocate for these public spaces (trails, paths, parks etc.) and call for it to become a routine procedure. I’d love to discuss this further at www.zebking.ca
13. Do you support adding substantively more accessible public bathrooms across Central Saanich?
Yes. As I continue to work on this initiative in Central Saanich, I invite residents to contact me at www.zebking.ca