Kitchener looks to cut car use with transportation plan

Kitchener city council unanimously approved its first Transportation Master Plan Monday, a plan that will guide transportation choices in the city through to 2031.

Kitchener city council on Monday unanimously approved its first transportation master plan, a document that will guide transportation choices in the city through to 2031.

The city's interim director of transportation services, Ken Carmichael, says one of the major goals of this new plan is to reduce car dependency.

"If we don't start getting our public to start using different modes of traffic, there's going to be significant pressures on widening of roadways throughout the region....not just the city but regional roads and in the area. There's significant capital costs to that and significant environmental costs to that," Carmichael said Monday.

Several goals listed in the master plan focusing on lessening the environmental impacts of transportation, like reducing energy consumption, reducing car emissions, improving air quality and increasing use of alternative travel options.  

"We're trying to get people carpooling, on to transit, cycling, walking, riding, things like that," said Carmichael.

"Obviously there's significant environment impacts to one single person driving a large vehicle around on a regular basis. So the less we can do that, the better our environment and our city will be and less the impacts will be on our city."

The plan will be reviewed every five years.