With increasing health and environmental concerns within our communities, active transportation is a relatively easy strategy for addressing these concerns and building vibrant healthy communities. Active transportation provides opportunities for the public to become more physically active and fit, as well as to help reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions that negatively impact our natural environment and our health.
Active Transportation (AT) means using human-powered transportation to move around. It also describes the necessary infrastructure (for example, bike lanes and sidewalks) communities need to allow citizens to safely commute to and from work, school, businesses, playgrounds, and green spaces. Human-powered transportation includes walking, cycling, wheeling, in-line skating, skateboarding, cross country skiing, canoeing, and kayaking.
The most popular modes are walking and cycling. Having a walkable and wheelable community is important part of creating a healthy, vibrant, and economically attractive community. Active Transportation has strong economic, health, safety, social, and environmental benefits.
BCAF has been actively involved in the promotion of AT within the Town of Bridgewater since the inception of the Bridgewater Active Transportation Committee (BATC) in 2004. Great strides have been made over the years towards the realization of AT routes and general AT community awareness within the community. Some of the major highlights to date have included the following:
- AT Report completed and presented to Bridgewater Town Council. Council appoints a Municipal representative to sit on BATC.
- Bridgewater Town Council passes a formal motion to support AT in future development decisions.
- Completion and ratification of Bridgewater Active Transportation and Connectivity Plan.
- AT recognized by community as one of five priority areas during Integrated Community sustainability Planning process.