2013 Tucson City Council Elections: Does your candidate care about transportation options?

LSA wants to ensure that our future leaders in the region understand the importance of having safe and efficient transportation options. For the first time ever, we are conducting a Candidate Survey to elicit the views of each candidate on important issues facing Tucson residents in the 2013 election.

The survey will go out to all Tucson City Council Candidates:

Ward 3
Karin Uhlich* (D)
Ben Buehler Garcia (R)

Ward 6
Steve Kozachik*(D)

Ward 5
Richard Fimbres* (D)
Mike Polak II (R)

*indicates incumbent

Below are the questions we’re asking.  LSA will post all answers on or before October 7th, 2013.

  1. What roles do you think city council can play in making cities safe, accessible and friendly for biking and walking?
  2. In what ways can enhanced bicycling and walking facilities and opportunities benefit your ward and the city as a whole? Are there any specific projects that you’d like to see accomplished?
  3. In just about every neighborhood throughout the city, one of the top concerns is drivers driving too fast, aggressively, and not yielding to pedestrians. What ideas do you have to calm traffic and make our neighborhoods safer and more comfortable in which to walk and bike? Feel free to talk about particular problem spots in your district.
  4. Given that the average person in Arizona age 16 to 34 drove 20%  fewer miles in 2009 than in 2001 and that people in that age group rode 40% more miles on public transit and took 20% more bike trips in that same time(?), what specific ideas do you have to make active transportation options like biking, walking, and public transit more efficient, convenient and appealing?
  5. What do you think is the number one risk to walkers and bicyclists both in your ward and the city as a whole? What have you done/will you do as an elected official to remedy it?
  6. Why do you think people who care about bicycling and walking issues and are interested in improving Tucson’s quality of life should vote for you and how can we help you reach those people with your message?
  7. Cities across the U.S. are in similar positions as Tucson with regard to budget shortfalls and public transit systems. Raising fares and cutting service are often the first tools cities use to correct their budgets, but some communities are turning their public transit systems into revenue generating assets with creative public/private partnerships[1]. What specific ideas do you have to increase choice ridership on Sun Tran?
  8. Given the success the Modern Streetcar has already achieved in economic development and smart growth goals, are you supportive of efforts to extend the route to other areas of the city to spur similar positive results? Do you support the idea of a local improvement district, spearheaded by local businesses, as a funding source for expansions and ongoing operations? Please elaborate.
  9. Do you use a bicycle (or walk) in the city? If so, for what purposes (commuting, recreation, errands) and how often?


[1] See Eric Jaffe’s How to Fund Transit Without Raising Fares or Cutting Transit, The Atlantic Cities, July 18, 2013

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