General News · 25th August 2016
Many of you desire Cortes transportation alternatives to the private car and over the years have offered creative ideas ranging from bike paths to water taxis, from electric bikes to a van shuttle, from golf carts to a Quadra ferry connector. Cars are expensive to own and many of you are looking for more ecologically friendly alternatives. I have been keeping an eye on other gulf islands and their transportation innovations and there are indeed great ideas and models out there. The problem on Cortes though, from a transportation perspective, is that there are so few of us and so spread out. The island hills and wet whether are not that conducive to bicycling, we need to move stuff as well as ourselves and many don’t have the resources to invest in cleaner technology. Is transportation innovation on Cortes then a lost cause? Are we so comfortable with our own cars that, until we hit a climactic or financial wall we are unlikely to change our patterns? It could be. It could also be that with some creative thought, public funds (to which we already have access), and local effort that we may support some local transportation alternatives. I have received many suggestions over the years of projects that you think should be funded... but given our marginal situation I have not wanted to invest in ideas that have not been thoroughly investigated for likely success.
However cautious I am about studies, I do think that in this case it is a wise idea to have a few people, in consultation with you, really put their attention to this. This is why I have supported the spending of $20,000 from the Cortes Gas Tax fund to conduct, this fall and winter, a Cortes transportation study. Cortes residents Max Thaysen and Kate Maddigan have teamed up with Bunt and Associates Transportation Planning in Victoria to conduct this study and just got started in time to catch the tail end of the visitors and summer residents where they are first putting their focus. They will be reaching out to the rest of us full time residents shortly and engaging us throughout the fall. If you want to be in touch with them, please do so at cortes.transpo.studygmail.com or call Max at 250-935-6336. I wish Kate, Max and Bunt all the very best with this endeavour and request the island’s creative cooperation.
In Gratitude, Noba Anderson
Comment by Wilson Baker on 12th September 2016
Why not a Hop-ON-Hop-OFF bus that drives a route on Cortes? This is used in Vancouver's Stanley Park as well other many other cities. A van or mini-bus would do very well here. It could have a scooter or wheel chair lift if use warrants it.
Comment by Carmen on 30th August 2016
We all have a choice: to go with our old assumptions and habits (everyone needs a car), or to open our minds to myriad creative solutions to our personal and global dilemmas. Creative solutions aren't always immediately obvious: that's why they are called 'creative' solutions. The consultants have abundant experience in exactly the challenges we face on Cortes, as we consider transportation options for a changing world.
If we are to meet the future with open eyes and willing hearts, we need to trust and be ready for the change that is happening all around us. New solutions will not be painful, but will make us all happier in the long run. Trust. And enjoy.
School bus underused ?
Comment by Robert Carter on 30th August 2016
It seems to me like the school bus has lots of underused capacity. Since it makes it to every corner of Cortes twice a day couldn't it also pick up other people en route ?
$20,000 is an obscene amount of money to spend on a study. Your article is confusing as to whether this is about a lack of money or an ecological principle. Surely most visitors and summer residents have vehicles of their own and have no need for public transit. If this is about our ecological footprint then we should discourage tourism, shut down the ferry and ban floatplanes. But I think this is more about poverty and the high costs of owning and maintaining a vehicle. In that case it is galling that you would spend so much money on yet another study when you could have just asked locals who have lived on Cortes for a decade or two. That would have been free.
We need a shuttle to the first ferry in the summer
Comment by Irene on 29th August 2016
for people who parked their cars in the line-up the night before. It is very wasteful that it takes 3 trips to Whaletown instead of one, especially for those who don't live near the ferry. We also need a shuttle to get them home the night before.
Be careful what you wish for
Comment by wendy on 27th August 2016
Remember the Victoria consultants hired to conduct our OCP Review and charged $54,000 for their less than stellar 'services' to the community?
fyi - Bunt and Associates Transportation Planning
Waste of $20,000
Comment by Walker Evans on 26th August 2016
The answers are as plain as day unless you refuse to see them. On Cortes most people/families need a car/truck. Ride sharing is only an option if you live next door to the person you are sharing with. Cycling only works if you are really in good shape and don't have to carry much. The Cortes Connection works if you need to go to Campbell River. That's about it. Most people on Cortes use their car/truck on a daily basis. The problem is logistics. There just aren't enough people on the island to warrant subsidizing public transportation. Sorry. I just said something politically incorrect but this is reality.
Comment by Andrea Block on 25th August 2016
Thank you all for this step forward for our community!