RTD Board of Directors elections 2022, District L: Ian Harwick

The District K director represents Arvada, Ralston Estates and Leyden.

An RTD bus pulls away from a stop on 47th Avenue in Montbello. Aug. 10, 2021. JoyAnn Keener Ruscha.

An RTD bus pulls away from a stop on 47th Avenue in Montbello. Aug. 10, 2021. JoyAnn Keener Ruscha.

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Nathaniel Minor, CPR News

Ian Harwick is a write-in candidate for District L.

What’s your elevator pitch for why voters should choose you?

I am home-grown candidate that cares deeply about how we move people throughout Denver and the Front Range.

What is the biggest problem facing RTD right now, and what would you do to fix it?

The buses and rail lines do not go enough places at a frequency required by people that do ride or could ride our in our vehicles.

I think we need to look at going back to the voters and asking for money to build out a system that finishes FasTracks and fully connects all communities to each other and to downtown Denver. I would also look to Front Range rail to connect us via Boulder.

As it emerges from the pandemic, RTD has prioritized transit service aimed at low-income and minority communities. Some once-popular routes that served wealthy areas remain suspended. Do you agree with this approach?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

Yes with a but. I think we need to consider those that are less fortunate first, but at the same time, we need to be thinking about how to do we make our services accessible to all. The more people that we can get using our services, riding bikes, walking, or safely using a wheelchair are people not in cars. That is a reduction in GHG, a decrease in traffic, and cleaner skies.

What should RTD do to make passengers feel safer?

Have every elected official in the metro area ride RTD at least once a week.  Electeds need to see what is really going on in their communities and this is an easy way to do it. By riding RTD they will see a glimpse into what many people experience every day. This will help them make more informed decisions and help work with RTD to address the issues safety on RTD and in the community.

Do you use public transit in your life now?

Yes

If yes, how often? What do you use it for? If not, why not?

2-3 times per week. To get to work, and to the airport.

Should RTD encourage cities to build more dense development that could yield higher ridership?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

YES! We need dense development and a ton of it should be right on top of RTD parking lots. With dense developments close to public transportation, you are allowing people to use their cars less, walk more, bike more, and in general lead healthier, happier lives.

Also, with more housing, we are hopefully getting people off of the streets into stable situations with the services that they need.

RTD’s short-term financial picture has stabilized, but there are no plans to expand service in the foreseeable future. Should RTD ask voters for a tax increase to enable that?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

We need a system that truly connects every part of the metro area, whether that is with BRT, buses, light rail, commuter rail, high speed rail, or even aerial transit. All of our cities should be well connected to each other, allowing for more reliable service to places that people want to go. In addition, we should work to make the Front Range Rail happen, truly connecting the front range.

Should state government contribute more funding to RTD in order to expand service?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

Yes. The metro area is half the population of the state. We have the potential to take 100’s of thousands of cars off the road every day. This would help decrease pollution and congestion and road rage, while hopefully improving our collective mental health, our environment and in some cases our reading habits.

Should RTD continue to save money toward the Boulder-Longmont train, and other unfinished FasTracks projects?

No

Explain your reasoning.

I think that we do need to finish these lines, but I think the money should be found either through partnerships (front range rail), from the feds, or from the state.

Our money at this point should be focused on enhancing the system that is already operational, hire more drivers, and look at ways to supplement the service that we already offer.

Should RTD reduce or eliminate its fares?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

In my mind, this just simplifies the process, brings equity to everyone, and increases ridership.

Should RTD do more to better meet the needs of the disability community?

Yes

Explain your reasoning.

I believe that when we plan for those most in need, we build something that is great for all.

Find your district here.

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