Episode 37 combines a look at City Hall with a Crime and Public Safety update, including a clue why carjackers and criminals started targeting the South Kenaston malls.

Part 1 – Which were our most popular podcasts during the funding campaign? Those episodes are how we earned your trust – and loyal listeners spurred a last-week surge to surpass the $3800 goal!

7:09 Part 2 – We’ve reported, ⁠almost alone in the media locally⁠, about how the City of Winnipeg continues to ⁠rig bike lane approvals⁠ – in violation of their own standards after the FIRST time they got caught cozying up to the bike lobby in 2010.

City councilor Russ Wyatt ⁠continued his stand against the anti-car agenda of bike lobbyists ⁠but after his twist on an iconic TV character nickname, he was begging off from the braying mob.

In his apology, Wyatt concurred with our decade+ of fact-finding:

the Bike lanes that has now taken parking away from residents and businesses along Assiniboine, Stradbrook and Goulet. Not to mention the lanes of parking lost in the downtown to bike lanes, that have negatively affected long time small businesses in the area…”

 “The city plans to take more lanes from vehicles, from more streets… we hear Bike Winnipeg calling for the closure of Assiniboine at Main Street, to vehicles, or removal of a well used Traffic Lane on Osborne at River… We can improve active transportation infrastructure in Winnipeg without causing further traffic congestion.”

– Unfortunately for Wyatt, he only articulated those points in his apology. If he had done so before, perhaps he wouldn’t have had to explain the frustration behind his saying “a bicycle nazi wants to take away all the lanes for the cars.”

(“The Soup Nazi” is the 116th episode of⁠ Seinfeld⁠; Will the ‘cancel Russ’ crowd will go after Jerry and then Hogan’s Heroes?)

A frequent delegate at City Hall, Kelly Ryback explains the Wyatt controversy. Ryback finished 2nd in the St. James ward in the 2022 election and has continued to flag mismanagement, inefficiencies and wasteful spending at 510 Main Street.

Listeners may be surprised at what Ryback contends is the underlying issue: the way some councilors treat delegates- and other councilors- during public meetings. Ryback recounts the intra-councilor battles that chew up time meant for public input. It’s undermining productive policy dialogue at City Hall.

24.40- Ryback exposes why the urban visionary dream of an Osborne and River pedestrian scramble is a potential nightmare- it’s a block from a key fire station.

This, Ryback says, is another example of how the City pushes thru the pet projects of bike lobbyists with no consultation with emergency services authorities.

“On any kind of these infrastructure changes and ideas, police, fire and paramedics are not consulted.”

To boot, the bike lanes aren’t getting used, harm neighborhood business viability, and has resulted in traffic snarls. And those snarls are one of many reasons why the City is finally- years after being told about it- going to try letting first responders switching traffic lights so they can clear intersections on their way to emergency calls.

34:00 Part 3- The Crime report has more proof how public disorder is reflected in transit fare skippers and violent behavior. ATU drivers say it’s way higher than the 4 million fares currently guesstimated, and behind 60% of assaults on drivers.

Lastly, a double carjacking at Seasons of Tuxedo- with one accused a 15 year old girl – raised a lot of questions. A surprising answer, from a source in the know, explained the migration of dangerous criminals down Route 90 to shopping mall lots near Ikea.

More to come with Kelly Ryback about homelessness, safe injection sites, and other civic topics later this week!

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