District 25 Democrat candidate Ennis Fant:
Answer 1) They should follow the lead of the city and expand biking and walking trails in the areas where there is the most residential growth.
Question 2) What would you say are Greenville’s transportation challenges? Do you think walking, biking and transit play a role in solving those challenges? How?
Answer 2) Public transportation is not an attractive expression in Greenville. We should attempt to make public transportation more attractive to the general public, plus expand routes further into the county and encourage more people to use it; particularly those that work downtown.
Question 3) Greenville County’s land use policies have a major impact on how people get around. Numerous studies show if you build pedestrian and bike-related infrastructure, people will use it. In addition, this type of infrastructure is much cheaper to build and maintain than car-based infrastructure. But when new construction is not required to include pedestrian and/or bike infrastructure, it is very often not included, limiting people’s options, and make foot and bicycle transportation less safe. What role do you think County Council plays in helping manage growth to ensure residents have transportation options?
Answer 3) Continue to encourage both commercial and residential developers to explore pedestrian and bike infrastructure in their new developments. The County could possibly consider some tax incentives to help offset the cost.
Question 4) The Swamp Rabbit Trail has had a huge impact on the economy and quality of life in our county, and there are plans to extend the trail to CU-ICAR. Some, but not all, of these installations can be grant funded. What other revenue sources will you propose for expanding our off-road trail?
Answer 4) Possibly consider using some of the accommodation tax money for those projects.
Question 5) The 2014 Roads Referendum included 101 bike walk projects that would cost $47.8 million. These proposals included many safe-routes-to-school projects, such as sidewalks to Monarch Elementary and Bells Crossing Elementary. There has been no discussion of funding these projects since the defeat of the referendum. Do you support funding these projects? How can these projects be funded so they may be built in the near future?
Answer 5) Possibly include these projects under the umbrella of the County Recreation District.
Question 6) Would you support the legislation in Columbia allowing a penny sales tax option for road improvements, including for biking and walking infrastructure, be granted to cities instead of just counties? The cities and counties have to work together to make biking and walking trails all that they can be to adequately serve the people.
Answer 6) I would support such a move.
Question 7) What role do you think County Council should play in making it safer for children to walk and bike to school?
Answer 7) There definitely needs to be more focus placed on biking and walking trails along with sidewalk expansion within a specific geographic radius of each school.
Question 8) Public Transportation passengers often walk or bike to their destinations from the nearest bus stop; however lack of funding for bike walk infrastructure is a barrier for use of public transportation. What funding sources could County Council provide to help support Greenlink expansion and accessibility to bus stops?
Answer 8) By increasing its public match from the general fund. I think we need to think longer and harder for more ways to reduce the carbon blueprint.
Question 9) Tell us about your personal experiences riding a bike, running or walking in Greenville County for recreation, exercise or transportation.
Answer 9) I have not ridden public transportation in Greenville for years and have walked the Swamp Rabbit Trail for exercise purposes on just a few occasions and enjoyed the experience. I would do it more if I had more time.