Transportation Safety Questionnaire for Springfield City Council Ward 1 Candidates

This transportation safety questionnaire was distributed to all candidates applying to fill the Springfield City Council Ward 1 vacancy. It was developed by BEST and partners to assist candidates in informing the community on an important issue of concern.

Responses from all candidates were accepted through Sunday, February 28. There are eight questions in four sections: About You, Goals, Actions, and Funding Priorities. All questions were optional.

As a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit organization, BEST does not support or oppose any candidate for elected office. BEST is sharing the responses we received as a public service.

On Monday, March 1, the Springfield City Council will deliberate and vote regarding the appointment of an interim Ward 1 City Councilor. See packet…

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Questions

  • Candidates
  • About You
    • Your own travel choices?
      How frequently do you travel in each of the following ways?
    • Safety in Springfield?
      Have you experienced, witnessed or heard about (near) crashes that have harmed or endangered people in Springfield (within the last five years)? Check all that apply.
    • Candidate statement?
      What do you wish to say to Springfield voters about your goals, plans and priorities for transportation safety if elected?
  • Goals
    • Springfield’s efforts?
      In a typical year, how many people do you estimate die or are seriously injured in traffic crashes in Springfield? What are your goals for transportation safety? To advance these goals, should Springfield do more, less, or about the same as it has been doing?
    • Vision Zero?
      If elected, will you push for the City of Springfield to adopt the Vision Zero approach to transportation safety? Why or why not?
  • Actions
    • Specific actions?
      How strongly do you oppose or support each of the following possible enforcement and engineering actions?
    • Successful and additional actions?
      What are the most successful actions Springfield is already taking based on the “Six E’s” of transportation safety? If elected, what additional actions will you take?
  • Funding Priorities
    • Priority projects over 20 years?
      The Springfield Transportation System Plan outlines priority projects over 20 years. Are these the right priorities for Springfield? Will you advocate for different priorities?

Responses

Candidates

Eight candidates have filed to fill the Springfield City Council Ward 1 vacancy (listed alphabetically):

Troy Allen

Grace Bergen

Timothy Canter

Thomas Lawrence

Kelly Mason

Damien Pitts

Ray Suit

Michelle Webber

About You

Please begin by telling us about yourself.

Your own travel choices?

How frequently do you travel in each of the following ways?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

Driving alone? Never.
Carpooling? Few times a year.
Riding a bus? Several times a week.
Bicycling? Few times a month.
On a skateboard or scooter? Never.
Walking? Several times a week.
Using a mobility device? Never.
Telecommuting? Several times a week.

I prefer LTD. I would like to bike more but its a little scary in the Gateway area.

Thomas Lawrence

Driving alone? Several times a week.
Carpooling? Several times a week.
Riding a bus? Never.
Bicycling? Never.
On a skateboard or scooter? Never.
Walking? Several times a week.
Using a mobility device? Never.
Telecommuting? Several times a week.

It has been many years since I have ridden the bus, but I do have experience riding it all around Eug/Spfd and it is a great system that we have here.

Kelly Mason

Driving alone? Several times a week.
Carpooling? Few times a month.
Riding a bus? Few times a year.
Bicycling? Few times a month.
On a skateboard or scooter? Never.
Walking? Several times a week.
Using a mobility device? Never.
Telecommuting? Several times a week.

Damien Pitts

Driving alone? Several times a week.
Carpooling? Few times a month.
Riding a bus? Few times a year.
Bicycling? Never.
On a skateboard or scooter? Never.
Walking? Few times a month.
Using a mobility device? Never.
Telecommuting? Few times a year.

I like the freedom of having my own vehicle to go and come as needed. I realize it is a privilege many do not have.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Safety in Springfield?

Have you experienced, witnessed or heard about (near) crashes that have harmed or endangered people in Springfield (within the last five years)? Check all that apply.

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

In a motor vehicle? Heard.
Riding a bus? Heard.
Bicycling? Heard.
On a skateboard or scooter? Heard.
Walking? Heard.
Using a mobility device? Don’t know.

Thomas Lawrence

In a motor vehicle? Personally experienced. Personally witnessed. Heard.
Riding a bus? Don’t know.
Bicycling? Personally witnessed. Heard.
On a skateboard or scooter? Don’t know.
Walking? Personally witnessed. Heard.
Using a mobility device? Don’t know.

There are many advanced crosswalks that have been added around town in the last few years, primarily in areas that have experienced frequent issues with car and pedestrian accidents. These crosswalks have helped minimize accidents without slowing down traffic much.

Kelly Mason

In a motor vehicle? Personally experienced.
Riding a bus? Heard.
Bicycling? Don’t know.
On a skateboard or scooter? Don’t know.
Walking? Heard.
Using a mobility device? Don’t know.

Damien Pitts

In a motor vehicle? Personally experienced. Personally witnessed. Heard.
Riding a bus? Don’t know.
Bicycling? Personally witnessed.
On a skateboard or scooter? Don’t know.
Walking? Don’t know.
Using a mobility device? Don’t know.

I have not been in an accident, but I have seen several that were due to people rushing, or ignoring signals. Also, there are some spots where stop signs should be, and near accidents occur due to lack of sight, speeding, or selfish driving.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Candidate statement?

What do you wish to say to Springfield voters about your goals, plans and priorities for transportation safety if elected?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

I believe we need to make streets more bike friendly and add more bike paths. We also need more controlled crossings of large streets.

Thomas Lawrence

I would love to see more bike paths and safe bike storage areas in major shopping centers, downtown, etc. Increases to LTD route frequencies would also be an area to look into for increasing the ability for people to use it conveniently when time is a barrier (work).

Kelly Mason

My goal if elected to City Council will be to continue making improvements for all modes of transportation in Springfield- there are many sidewalks, bike paths, lighting improvements, etc. that need safety and accessibility modifications. I believe in leading by example, which means using public transit whenever possible, promoting walking and biking, and limiting single rider trips. I have also participated in research for Lane Transit District throughout my Master of Public Administration program where I have had the opportunity to engage with LTD staff and learn about the needs of our community. I will prioritize outreach and education for transportation safety along with an increased emphasis on the use of public transit in order to promote a better and healthier Springfield.

Damien Pitts

I would first like to learn more about public transportation, as well as see what it takes to add or change signage, lights, etc. I would want to determine the accessibility of public transportation, as well as other means of travel, and see how equitable is or can be.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Goals

Now tell us about the transportation safety goals you support.

Springfield’s efforts?

In a typical year, how many people do you estimate die or are seriously injured in traffic crashes in Springfield? What are your goals for transportation safety? To advance these goals, should Springfield do more, less, or about the same as it has been doing?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

40. Springfield needs to continue on street safety and enhance the safety of walkers. We need to work more with LTD to provide more covered bus stops. We need more across town bike paths and more bike safety.

Thomas Lawrence

I believe Springfield is on the right path already in fixing safety concerns for pedestrian travels. I would like to see increased mass travel systems like RideSource shopper vans and busses.

Kelly Mason

1,000+. Springfield should do more than it has been doing for transportation safety- especially for pedestrians on our busier streets, as well as improving bike lanes. There are many strategies that can be implemented in order to improve transportation safety such as improved lighting, separation of bike lane from main traffic, implementing new technology for crosswalks, improved signage and more.

Springfield so do more to reach these goals.

Damien Pitts

I would estimate 20. I really do not hear much about serious traffic injuries. My first goal would be to have candid conversations about what safety means. The definition alone can open up many doors that need to be kicked open, if I may be frank. I do agree that more can always be done, but adding is not always the solution, and can be expensive. I think an assessment of current issues, beliefs, and funding must be done before any progress can be made.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Vision Zero?

If elected, will you push for the City of Springfield to adopt the Vision Zero approach to transportation safety? Why or why not?

Vision Zero is a strategy to eliminate all traffic fatalities and severe injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. First implemented in Sweden in the 1990s, Vision Zero has proved successful across Europe—and now it’s gaining momentum in major American cities. For example, see What is Vision Zero?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

Im already a supporter of the ideas of Vision Zero. I do not know all of the policy implications however.

Thomas Lawrence

I would not push for it, but I do see the value in it. Currently I believe our system and changes in recent years are already proving effective.

Kelly Mason

Yes, I would push for Springfield to adopt the Vision Zero approach, I know that it was adopted in Eugene a few years ago and there are only positive benefits that could result from more informed citizens and access to information in order to have the tools we need to eliminate all traffic fatalities and injuries.

Damien Pitts

(no response)

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Actions

Professionals talk about the “Six E’s” of transportation safety:

  1. Encouragement,
  2. Education,
  3. Enforcement,
  4. Engineering,
  5. Equity, and
  6. Evaluation.
Specific actions?

How strongly do you oppose or support each of the following possible enforcement and engineering actions?

  1. Lowering speed limits to minimize fatal or serious injury crashes?
  2. Using automated cameras to enforce speed limits or stop lights?
  3. Removing parking spaces to create safer areas for people bicycling?
  4. Installing better crossing infrastructure to for people walking?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

Lowering speed limits? Strongly support.
Using automated cameras? Strongly support.
Removing parking spaces? Somewhat support.
Better crossing infrastructure? Strongly support.

I strongly support almost all of the statements because to me they are common since. The parking issue I would want small businesses to comment on especially on Main Street.

Thomas Lawrence

Lowering speed limits? Somewhat oppose.
Using automated cameras? Somewhat oppose.
Removing parking spaces? Somewhat oppose.
Better crossing infrastructure? Somewhat support.

At this point in time I am far too unfamiliar with the stats and frequencies of issues, I would need more information and education on the continuing issues and research for which of these methods are needed and effective.

Kelly Mason

Lowering speed limits? Somewhat support.
Using automated cameras? Strongly support.
Removing parking spaces? Strongly support.
Better crossing infrastructure? Strongly support.

I strongly support each of the possible actions because the total social benefit exceeds any inconvenience or cost that may result from implementation. While some of these actions may take time and money, they can be implemented over time in phases by determining the most urgent needs in our community. I believe that installing better crossing infrastructure is one of the most urgent needs as there have been several fatalities related to this mode of transportation in the past few years in Springfield.

Damien Pitts

Lowering speed limits? Somewhat support: Lowering speed limits can be great, but that will not stop people from being reckless. There are places outside of Oregon that have higher speed limits and less fatalities. However, I see people zoom through my neighborhood for no good reason, and I wish there was a speedbump, or signs that explain that fast driving through a residential area will not be tolerated. This goes for school zones as well. SLOW DOWN!.
Using automated cameras? Somewhat oppose: Automate cameras are often run by private companies. I lived in a city that had them, and I found out the money did not go to improving the city, but to a company. I will admit, I received a ticket for turning too soon. While I learned my lesson, I was appalled that the cameras were not run by the city.
Removing parking spaces? Somewhat oppose: I do not see how removing parking spaces will create safer areas. In my opinion, parking lots will keep cars from having to park on the street, which means that bikers are more safe due to competing with cars trying to find parking on the street.
Better crossing infrastructure? Strongly support: Crosswalks are important. I have been in cities where the crossing time was much longer, and allowed those who had accessibility issues to have adequate time to cross the road. Also, visually impaired citizens utilize these too, and many of our crosswalks to not have voice commands.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Successful and additional actions?

What are the most successful actions Springfield is already taking based on the “Six E’s” of transportation safety? If elected, what additional actions will you take?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

I do think we need more work around education and more partnering with schools.

Thomas Lawrence

From what I have seen, we do a good job of making changes to areas after issues have occurred. While this is great, it would be nice to see Springfield making changes prior to incidents and accidents happening.

Kelly Mason

(no response)

Damien Pitts

I think the encouragement is the top. I appreciate the bike paths for those who choose to use it. However, these are not always safe. Women have been assaulted. I, as a black man, would be hesitant to use a bike/walk path due to the fear that I am a criminal.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

Funding Priorities

Adopted in July 2014, the Springfield Transportation System Plan outlines four goals:

  1. Community Development—Provide an efficient, sustainable, diverse, and environmentally sound transportation system that supports and enhances Springfield’s economy and land use patterns.
  2. System Management—Preserve, maintain, and enhance Springfield’s transportation system through safe, efficient, and cost-effective transportation system operations and maintenance techniques for all modes.
  3. System Design—Enhance and expand Springfield’s transportation system design to provide a complete range of transportation mode choices.
  4. System Financing—Create and maintain a sustainable transportation funding plan that provides implementable steps towards meeting Springfield’s vision.
Priority projects over 20 years?

The Springfield Transportation System Plan outlines priority projects over 20 years. Are these the right priorities for Springfield? Will you advocate for different priorities?

Troy Allen

(no response)

Grace Bergen

(no response)

Timothy Canter

Generally I support the plan as created. I would need more time to study it and would want to physically see the areas. It’s also never to early to get community input.

Thomas Lawrence

It would be far above my expertise to identify the priorities of different areas and types of roads and traffic devices, but what I can say is I believe Springfield has made positive strides in making the streets safer. One priority of mine in generics would be I approve of changes that decrease the number of cars on the road and increase pedestrians and mass transit and other alternate forms of transportation.

Kelly Mason

I believe that many of the projects outlined in the Transportation System Plan are of great importance and will enhance walking and biking opportunities for Springfield.

Damien Pitts

I think the plan is very detailed, yet somewhat convoluted. I am a cause and effect person, so reading this does not make things clear. I am glad the budget is laid out, but there needs to be something about the ebbs and flows of population, demographic shifting, and construction. Easier said than done, but this project feeds into so many others. That information, while overwhelming, would be helpful.

Ray Suit

(no response)

Michelle Webber

(no response)

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