Active transportation workshop for Digby

Jonathan Riley, Digby Courier
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Digby’s mayor Ben Cleveland walks 3 km to work almost every day from his house on Lighthouse Road.

Cara Sunderland wants to help you walk more. Or bike, or skate.

“Active transportation is getting from point A to point B under your own steam,” says Sunderland,the active living coordinator with Digby Area Recreation. “Walking more, driving less.”

She has organized an active transportation workshop on Tuesday, Oct. 30 to get people in the Digby area thinking.

“We just want to introduce active transportation and talk about what is possible for Digby and area,” says Sunderland. “And create some support here for a more active lifestyle.”

The Ecology Action Centre from Halifax will be presenting their publication “Active Transportation 101, Bringing AT to your community and developing an AT plan” which will be followed by discussion about what active transportation might look like in Digby.

“I have invited municipal councilor and staff,” says Sunderland. “That way when they are doing planning or making decisions, they at least have heard of active transportation and can include some consideration of that in their plans.”

Sunderland says the workshop will also include some walking.

“We might go for a walk around the local schools, do some need assessment there, see what barriers there are to getting more kids walking to school, and what opportunities there are.”

Sunderland says active transportation is as easy as walking to work, walking to school, or even walking for groceries.

“The number one self-reported barrier to physical activity is time,” says Sunderland. “So kill two birds with one stone – get to where you need to go while doing a physical activity that you enjoy – walk it.

“Ten minutes, three times a day of moderate activity; that’s all you need to do.”

Sunderland says just about anyone in town can walk to work: 3 km, she says, is walkable and 5 km is bikable.

“If you live outside of those ranges why not drive to a parking lot and walk the rest of the way?” she says.

Digby’s mayor Ben Cleveland, for example, walks to town from Lighthouse Road almost every day.

“People have stopped asking me if I want a ride,” says the mayor. “They know I want to walk. It’s something I enjoy and I feel better for it.”

Sunderland would like to see anyone and everyone interested in active transportation attend the workshop.

It is takes place at the Digby Curling Centre, on Tuesday, Oct. 30, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Sunderland asks anyone interested to give her a call to register as soon as possible.

Organizations: Ecology Action Centre, Digby Curling Centre

Geographic location: Digby, Lighthouse Road

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