News from Canada's walking movement.
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April 2017

CANADA WALKS NEWS is published by Canada Walks, a department of Green Communities CanadaGot news about walking and walkability? Let us know ... Subscribe, and share with a friend. See our websites: 
Photo: Silvana Farrace-Perry

Kingston is WALK Friendly

KINGSTON, ON has been awarded a bronze designation under the WALK Friendly Communities program delivered by Green Communities Canada (Canada Walks).
This medium-sized city has done an impressive job of promoting walkability and engaging its citizens to increase walking rates. Kingston consistently does well in the Commuter Challenge, and in 2016 recorded the highest participation rate in Ontario.
Highlights include:
  • Creation of an advisory committee with broad representation, including citizens, to develop an Active Transportation Master Plan, which is scheduled to be completed by mid-2018.
  • Pedestrian-friendly initiatives such as reduced speed limits, street design changes, and crosswalk upgrades as outlined in the recently updated Ontario Traffic Manual, Book 15 on Pedestrian Crossing Facilities.
  • An app-based series of guided walking tours, using technology to encourage walking.
WALK Friendly Communities recognizes efforts to improve walkability by awarding Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum designations. The designation uses a comprehensive framework of indicators, enabling municipalities to benchmark improvements over time. A panel of expert reviewers provides feedback and advice.
Read the profiles of all designated WALK Friendly Communities here.
The 2016 WALK Friendly Communities application intake was funded by the Canadian Automobile Association (National CAA) and South Central Ontario CAA.

Federal budget gets mixed review

CHAMPIONS OF active transportation have mixed reactions to the recent federal budget. We are disappointed the budget did not include a dedicated active transportation infrastructure fund, as urged by a national alliance that includes Green Communities Canada. See the brief
Meanwhile, we have high hopes that the government will develop a strategy that addresses walking, cycling, and active school travel. Dozens of organizations are calling on the government to complete an active transportation strategy. We note the budget includes funds to “decarbonize the transportation system.”
If your organization would like join in supporting a federal AT strategy contact Clifford Maynes as soon as possible to lend your name and/or request more information.

Winter Walking photo contest wraps up

IT’S BEEN a long winter walking season and Canada Walks was thrilled to receive photos of many celebrations and walking adventures from across the country. Our monthly featured photos proved winter walking is both fun and feasible. We have two final photos to share from the #winterwalkphoto contest, which ended 31 March.
Alane Matrinuzzi, a teacher from Orleans, ON, submitted this photo of students in warm hats, jackets, smiles, and moustaches, which captured the spirit and quirkiness of winter walking, even indoors.
This photo of students trying out snowshoeing, a traditional mode of winter walking, was submitted by Ms Mouchian, St. Timothy Separate School, Mississauga, ON.
Thanks to all who participated in the #winterwalkphoto contest.

Goodbye winter! Enjoy walking and rolling into spring.

KYS the Cat takes a winter walk

OUR LADY of Peace Catholic Elementary School, Maple, ON, held a successful Winter Walk Day that was featured in the Vaughan East edition of SNAP’d magazine. Visits from local stakeholders, including KYS (Keeping YorKids Safe) the Cat, safety displays, and hot chocolate contributed to the fun.

Book launch

THE TORONTO Centre for Active Transportation (TCAT) is hosting a book launch for its new publication Active Transportation Planning Beyond the Greenbelt, 4 April at Ryerson University, Toronto, ON. The event includes a panel discussion and refreshments. Reserve a free ticket.

Call for nominations

TOOLS OF Change is looking for nominations from programs focused on active/sustainable transportation for Landmark designation. Landmark recognizes behavior change and social marketing programs that are considered to the most successful in the world. Designated programs gain exposure, credibility, and free on-line materials, all of which can make it easier to maintain or increase program funding
More information here. Apply by 5 June.

Symposium promotes active travel

THE CHILDREN’S Health and the Environment Workshop and Symposium: Moving Research to Action for Healthy Kids, 26-28 June, London, ON, will share the latest information on three key areas, including promoting physical activity through active travel.
Organizers have issued a general invitation for proposals for interactive  poster sessions. More information and registration details here
profiles actions to help create communities where walking is safe, easy, enjoyable, and inviting. Donate to the Green Communities Foundation to provide vital support for this work. Just click on the DONATE button and indicate in the comments section that you'd like your gift to go to the work of Canada Walks.

Join the IWALK/IWHEEL Club

SIGN UP for the IWALK/IWHEEL Club, a great way to encourage students and families to leave the car at home and walk or cycle to school all year long. Students receive their own “club card” to track their active travel trips throughout the year and classes can engage in friendly competition. Register and receive iwalk-iwheel waterless tattoos to use as student incentives.

Your ideas please

If you have story ideas or walking news you'd like to share, please send to us at Be sure to include your contact details. 

Canada Walks workshops and services

CANADA WALKS offers a variety of customized services, including webinars, half- and full-day on-site workshops, and intensive community visits. School Travel Planning training is also now available. Training is offered in a modular format so that each community can learn about topics relevant to their current level of experience with active school travel. Contact Kate Berry to learn more.

Our partners

Green Communities’ Canada Walks is a member of the International Federation of Pedestrians  | 
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Canada Walks is a department of Green Communities Canada.