Monday, March 30, 2009

Janet Miller's position on cycling-advocacy issues

As you may know, Tuesday, April 7 is election day for city council representatives in districts 1, 3 and 6. Janet Miller (link now fixed) is a candidate in the District 6 race, and last week I wrote her to ask her to speak to bicycle-advocacy issues and what if any measures she would support as a member of the council. This evening, I received her reply; it appears in full below. I should add that this isn't intended to serve as an endorsement of Miller's candidacy; I provide it here as a service to readers who plan to vote and/or for whom cycling issues are important:
Hi John –

Thank you for your inquiry about my position on making Wichita more bicycle-friendly. I am 100% behind efforts to move Wichita toward being a better place for cycling as an alternate mode of transportation. This includes supporting not only the addition of bike paths, but also moving toward the philosophy of “complete streets” that are bike/ped/car accommodating. As President of the Park Board, I have been actively advocating for this concept for a number of years. I think the City’s planning staff is moving more in this direction, but other City departments aren’t quite there yet. I am on a mission to help move us in this direction, which would include more bike paths, more on-road bike lanes, installing bike racks on public buses and in public spaces, and providing “share the road” education. Last fall, I participated in one of the local KDOT town hall meetings and advocated for the inclusion of bike/ped projects, funding, and incentives in the next 10-year transportation plan. I am also an advocate of the local annual “bike to work” event.

You certainly have my permission to print my answer on your blog, and I thank you for the opportunity to weigh-in on this important issue. My guess is that we have a number of acquaintances in common who enjoy cycling in Wichita (and who would enjoy it even more if we had the infrastructure to support it!) I look forward to meeting you in person one day soon. Let me know if I can answer other questions or clarify any of my answer.

Miller's opponent in District 6 is Bob Aldrich. I have sent him the same letter I sent to Miller; should I receive a reply from him before the election and have his permission to do so, I will post his reply here.

EDIT: In my District 6-centric frame of mind last week, it didn't occur to me that the candidates in the District 1 and 3 races might also have some thoughts on infrastructure as it applies to cyclists. Therefore, I'll be e-mailing those other candidates and posting their responses as I receive them, too.


Anonymous said...

You should send these comments to the Oz Bicycle Club, Run Wichita, and the Kansas Cicylist Blog.

Here's the website for the blog

It get's attention nationally.

Deb said...

I just found this blog. Janet Miller has been helping us with a bike path issue. Memorial Day Weekend, we were riding on the path and when going under the walkway at Exploration Place, a CAR came down the sidewalk and nearly hit us! Turns out that a car show was being set up - we didn't know - there were no warning signs, etc. We wanted to talk to someone in charge to express our concern for bike path safety and keep this from happening again - City Parks Dept says they have no authority because it was on Exploration Place property (owned by the county), Exploration Place has apologized/said they'll try to put up warning signs on the bike path in the future (aren't they required??), and no word yet from the county. Janet is doing a lot of research, but so far it sounds like the bike path at Exploration Place could be in some kind of "no-mans land" when it comes to cyclist safety requirements. Anyway, just a heads-up, and to say Janet has been following through on this.