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Winter Walking and Cycling
#11
(01-04-2018, 12:41 PM)ijmorlan Wrote:
(01-04-2018, 12:35 PM)MidTowner Wrote: I remember calling about a property with this situation last year, saying that they had cleared, but then the plow had made the corner inaccessible. The staff member retorted “well, that’s not really the property owner’s fault, is it?”

Right, it’s the City’s, i.e. their colleagues', fault.

I was too polite to say that. But, yes...

One thing that has improved so far this year is that the plows seem less apt to cover half of an entire length of sidewalk with snow when there is no boulevard. I used to live on a street with no boulevard, and it was a pain when that happened. And plenty of property owners will just let the sidewalk get increasingly narrow when it happens.
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#12
(01-04-2018, 01:01 PM)MidTowner Wrote:
(01-04-2018, 12:41 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: Right, it’s the City’s, i.e. their colleagues', fault.

I was too polite to say that. But, yes...

One thing that has improved so far this year is that the plows seem less apt to cover half of an entire length of sidewalk with snow when there is no boulevard. I used to live on a street with no boulevard, and it was a pain when that happened. And plenty of property owners will just let the sidewalk get increasingly narrow when it happens.

I wonder if this is not simply because there hasn't yet been the same accumulation we have by later in the year.  Last year I recall some waist high snowbanks that I had to climb up to cross roads...frankly, it was dangerous even for an able bodied person like me.

The biggest "insult to injury" part of this issue that I've seen was CoK staff's report on sidewalk clearing which suggested they would get "more complaints" with sidewalk plowing, without acknowledging that those complaints would be "oh no, the plow scraped my grass" instead of "help I'm stuck in my house and I cannot get to my job/appointments/food because the sidewalks are blocked".
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#13
(01-04-2018, 12:11 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: Worth reviving this thread now that we're into winter again.  Aside from useful phone numbers, TriTAG has also released their sidewalk survey results.

http://www.tritag.ca/blog/2018/01/04/win...alk-study/

It will come to nobody's surprise that the results are not positive for mobility in the winter months, walking anything more than a trivial distance gives a very high probability of finding a blocked sidewalk.

I walk to work many days in the winter, and I doubt there is a day in the white part of winter, when there isn't a blocked sidewalk.  I have a coworker who is in a wheelchair and he is unable to reliably get to work in the winter, and as far as I understand, doesn't even bother to try to wheel his way there as he does all spring summer and fall.

City of Waterloo staff have acknowledged to me that the policy for curb ramps is that nobody clears them, essentially meaning the official policy is that sidewalks are closed for the season in winter.

This is especially timely as this article just came out: https://www.therecord.com/news-story/803...-the-road/

Where a pedestrian is charged with walking on the road, and police remind us to use sidewalks.

Few people willingly choose to walk on the road, but how many times have I seen people in mobility scooters, elderly people, even people with walkers, in the terrifying position of walking down a lane on a busy road, getting honked at by motorists wizzing past.

CTV clip with video of the street/sidewalk:
https://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1296593
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#14
The staff report was bizarre in how it discussed complaints. It estimated that complaints about City-maintained sidewalks would increase from 88 to over 1000. But the number of complaints in 15/16 was 902 (there were more than 2500 in 14/15). They are making a distinction between complaints made concerning City-maintained sidewalks, and those made concerning property owner-maintained sidewalks, and I can't understand why.
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#15
So an increase from 990 (902 + 88) to over 1000. That's an increase of over 1%!
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#16
The specific number predicted was 1150, so almost two percent.

There's a table showing 1150 next to 88, which sure seems like quite a jump. But it's not a proper comparison.
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#17
(01-04-2018, 02:36 PM)Ace Wrote:
(01-04-2018, 12:11 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: Worth reviving this thread now that we're into winter again.  Aside from useful phone numbers, TriTAG has also released their sidewalk survey results.

http://www.tritag.ca/blog/2018/01/04/win...alk-study/

It will come to nobody's surprise that the results are not positive for mobility in the winter months, walking anything more than a trivial distance gives a very high probability of finding a blocked sidewalk.

I walk to work many days in the winter, and I doubt there is a day in the white part of winter, when there isn't a blocked sidewalk.  I have a coworker who is in a wheelchair and he is unable to reliably get to work in the winter, and as far as I understand, doesn't even bother to try to wheel his way there as he does all spring summer and fall.

City of Waterloo staff have acknowledged to me that the policy for curb ramps is that nobody clears them, essentially meaning the official policy is that sidewalks are closed for the season in winter.

This is especially timely as this article just came out: https://www.therecord.com/news-story/803...-the-road/

Where a pedestrian is charged with walking on the road, and police remind us to use sidewalks.

Few people willingly choose to walk on the road, but how many times have I seen people in mobility scooters, elderly people, even people with walkers, in the terrifying position of walking down a lane on a busy road, getting honked at by motorists wizzing past.

CTV clip with video of the street/sidewalk:
https://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1296593

"Use sidewalks and wear reflective clothing"...just a little extra victim blaming for good measure.

Sidewalks appear plowed, but pretty poorly.  There was also a buggy of some type in the video, which would be a challenge to drag through the snow.  

Yeah....*sigh*.
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#18
(01-04-2018, 03:16 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: [quote pid='46861' dateline='1515090982']

"Use sidewalks and wear reflective clothing"...just a little extra victim blaming for good measure.

Sidewalks appear plowed, but pretty poorly.  There was also a buggy of some type in the video, which would be a challenge to drag through the snow.  

Yeah....*sigh*.

[/quote]

Victim blaming, and unclear. Walking in the road is against the law, and you can be fined for it. Walking with a grey jacket on your way to the office is not against the law. They shouldn't be in the same sentence.
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#19
(01-04-2018, 03:41 PM)MidTowner Wrote:
(01-04-2018, 03:16 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: [quote pid='46861' dateline='1515090982']

"Use sidewalks and wear reflective clothing"...just a little extra victim blaming for good measure.

Sidewalks appear plowed, but pretty poorly.  There was also a buggy of some type in the video, which would be a challenge to drag through the snow.  

Yeah....*sigh*.

Victim blaming, and unclear. Walking in the road is against the law, and you can be fined for it. Walking with a grey jacket on your way to the office is not against the law. They shouldn't be in the same sentence.
[/quote]

Walking in the road is perfectly legal if there is no passable sidewalk.
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#20
The only section of the HTA I can find that says anything about sidewalks and pedestrians is

Quote:Duties of pedestrian when walking along highway

179 (1) Where sidewalks are not provided on a highway, a pedestrian walking along the highway shall walk on the left side thereof facing oncoming traffic and, when walking along the roadway, shall walk as close to the left edge thereof as possible.  R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 179 (1).
Idem

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a pedestrian walking a bicycle in circumstances where crossing to the left side of the highway would be unsafe.  R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 179 (2).

Does anyone have a citation for not being permitted to walk in a highway if there are sidewalks present?
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