D’Lynda Fischer – 2018

Name D’Lynda Fischer
Candidate for: City Council
1.    Do you ride a bicycle in Petaluma for recreation or transportation?  Why or why not?  What has been your experience? I ride several bicycles in Petaluma both for recreation and for transportation. As a member of the Petaluma Wheelmen since 2013, I have spent a great number of hours travelling the streets throughout Petaluma and Sonoma and Marin Counties. My experience as a recreational cyclist is that there are many great routes to take from Petaluma into our surrounding areas that offer beautiful views and challenging hills. I typically cycle across town using Corona or Petaluma Boulevard to Redwood. Cycling on Lakeville, McDowell, and Washington Boulevard east of Petaluma Boulevard is challenging even for an experienced cyclist. Using my town bike for transportation is pleasant when riding west of the river. I find the Lynch Creek Trail unpleasant to travel due to the surface, lack of signage, and numerous crossings. The most direct route for me to cross the freeway is Washington Boulevard and with the numerous driveways and lack of bike lane, it is not a safe option.
2. What role does bicycling and walking play in your vision for the future development of Petaluma?  If elected what strategies/ tools/resources would you utilize to realize this vision? Bicycling and walking are key aspects of my vision for the future of Petaluma. Providing access to alternative modes of transportation are required to help us alleviate congestion, create a more healthy, vibrant city and equitable community. I will prioritize ways to increase accessibility to public transit, to understand the barriers to ridership and needs of our community. Implementation of our Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan is my priority. The expansion of our downtown with mixed-use development along our transit corridors is the core of my vision to create alternative choices for those choosing to live a more sustainable lifestyle.
3.  What are Petaluma’s biggest transportation challenges?   What policies or projects would you promote to address these challenges? Three significant challenges are our cross-town connectors, increasing congestion beyond peak hours, and lack of alternatives to single-occupancy vehicles. I will create an opportunity for community input and dialog to learn about the two cross-town connectors outlined in our General Plan to understand the barriers, the feasibility, and realistic timing of these proposed projects. Ask that we reevaluate the overall traffic movement in our city to determine which intersections can be improved by modifying the timing of our signals. I will promote the development of projects that create housing in our transit hubs and along our transportation corridors to reduce reliance on vehicles.
4.  Petaluma streets are increasingly congested and worn if elected, how would you propose to improve infrastructure in the City? 1. Improving the timing of our signalization of intersections along our boulevards and arterials. 2. Explore a tax on heavy vehicles to help offset the cost of maintaining the roadways traveled where the additional wear and tear exacerbates the surface condition. 3. Insisting on more transparency and knowledge about how Public Works determines their schedule for repairs and providing this information to the public with regular updates. 4. Striping key intersections to increase pedestrian safety in and around our downtown. 5. Explore the development of additional ball fields on the west side of town to help alleviate congestion in the afternoon and encourage carpooling to games and practice.
5.  Why should people who care about street safety, bicycling and walking issues vote for you? Because I have an intimate understanding of the needs of cyclists and pedestrians in this city as my two primary modes of transportation are on a bicycle and on foot, with an acute awareness of my surroundings.