Sidewalk strategy prompts review


Saanich councillor’s sidewalk crusade prompts policy review; by Jeff Bell, Times Colonist – September 27, 2013

Saanich staff will review the municipality’s policies governing sidewalks after one councillor sparked a discussion on the issue.

Coun. Dean Murdock raised the issue at a meeting this week after spending part of his summer visiting neighbourhoods and talking with residents who want to see more sidewalks created.

Although his goal of creating a “sidewalk strategy” for Saanich didn’t materialize after he spoke to council about the issue, Murdock said he believes his council colleagues realize more sidewalks are needed.

“I think there was consensus among councillors that something needs to be done,” Murdock said. “They recognize that there is a real demand and a need out there for improvement in the pedestrian environment all over the community.”

Murdock received more than 200 invitations from people wanting their neighbourhood to be part of his summer study. He has said the need for more sidewalks can be tied to the fact that much of Saanich’s development came in the 1960s and ’70s, when pedestrians were less of a planning consideration than they are today.