Six board members from Gainesville Citizens for Active Transportation voted to endorse Helen Warren and Harvey Ward on Monday after six candidates for City Commission pledged to help make city streets safer.
The candidates spoke at the third annual candidate forum for Gainesville Citizens for Active Transportation at Santa Fe College’s Center for Innovation & Economic Development on West University Avenue.
In March, Gainesville will vote.
The candidates, including Jenn Powell and Helen Warren for At-Large positions, Sheryl Eddie and Harvey Ward for District 2 and David Isaiah Arreola and Craig Carter for District 3, spoke to about 60 residents in hopes of receiving an endorsement from the organization.
District 2 candidate Eddie suggested converting old city buses to mobile health clinics and early learning centers.
“We can take services to neighborhoods that need them,” she said. “I hope I get your vote because I have ideas, and I know how to implement them.”
Eddie said she supported Gainesville Mayor Lauren Poe’s initiatives to decrease traffic accidents. Ward, her opponent, agreed.
“Safe driving conditions is the elephant in the room,” Ward said. Alycin Hayes, 63, who attended the forum meetings, said the city needs to implement safer bike lanes to prevent further accidents. Hayes, a children’s book author, said she attended the meeting to hear what the candidates had to say.
“What I mostly want to hear is what they will do,” the Gainesville resident said. “Before I vote, I want to see what candidates stand for.”