Tag: Complete Streets

Complete Streets News – April 2014

Policy Adoption

The Middletown, CT Planning and Zoning Commission voted last month to incorporate a Complete Streets Master Plan as an amendment to the city’s Plan of Conservation and Development. The plan’s development was led by a citizen committee working closely with the Common Council and Mayor Daniel Drew, and its adoption will ensure Complete Streets principles are integral part of the city’s long-term planning process. Read more >>

The city council in Columbus, GA, which had been working toward a Complete Streets policy since the fall, resolved in March to adopt the Georgia Department of Transportation’s Complete Streets design policy as its own guide for all local transportation improvements. Read more >>

The Philadelphia-area community of Cherry Hill, NJ, adopted a Complete Streets policy in late March. The resolution provides additional backing for the commitment to multimodal accessibility the township made in its 2013 pedestrian and bicycle master plan. Read more >>

Chattanooga became the latest Tennessee city to adopt a Complete Streets measure, when city council adopted an ordinance on April 1. The new policy builds on the successful launch of a 33-station bikeshare system in 2012—the largest new system in the country at the time—which galvanized local support for inclusive transportation policy and infrastructure. Read more >>

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Smart Growth America’s coalition members gather for annual meeting

coalition-mtg_3-2014Dru Schmidt-Perkins of 1,000 Friends of Maryland (left) with Tyler Grote of Smart Growth America at last week’s meeting.

Last week, members of Smart Growth America’s non-profit coalition gathered in Washington, DC for the coalition’s annual meeting and advocacy day on Capitol Hill.

On Wednesday, coalition members and Smart Growth America staff discussed the new issues and progress made in each member’s region. Staff from Smart Growth America and Transportation for America briefed the members about progress on projects including the National Complete Streets Coalition, innovative transportation policies in Michigan and projects to improve community health in the transportation planning process.

Then member organizations presented about their achievements in the last year and discussed the challenges within each region. The Alliance to Re-Industrialize for a Sustainable Economy (ARISE) Minnesota’s Zachary Zweifler gave an insightful presentation on how they are designing projects to transform former industrial sites into mixed-use developments using non-traditional approaches. And Kaid Benfield, co-founder of Smart Growth America and the author of People Habitat: 25 Ways to Think About Greener, Healthier Cities, shared a few of the major points from his book, which discusses topics as wide-ranging as “green” housing developments that are no such thing, the tricky matter of gentrifying inner cities, why people don’t walk much anymore, and the relationship between cities and religion.

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The last frontier: Complete Streets in Alaska

anchorageThis multi-use sidepath in Anchorage, AK is maintained and used for transportation year-round. Photo courtesy of Lori Schanche, Anchorage Department of Public Works.

Last month, Senator Mark Begich of Alaska introduced the Safe Streets Act of 2014 (S. 2004), which requires states and regions to adopt Complete Streets policies for federally funded transportation projects.

Why would a Senator from the nation’s coldest state introduce legislation that supports walking, biking and transit? Complete Streets strategies aren’t just for big cities or warm climates. Smaller cities and towns across the country are embracing Complete Streets, with policies now in place in 48 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia.

In Alaska, communities as far north as Fairbanks and North Pole are putting Complete Streets principles to work as more and more residents get around without getting in the car. And these efforts are paying off. The state ranks highest in the U.S. in the percentage of walking and biking commutes and in per capita funding for non-motorized transportation, and third-lowest in fatality rate among walkers and bicyclists.

A new implementation brief about Complete Streets in Alaska has even more information about the strategies being used by this snowy state. Here are some highlights from the brief.

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Complete Streets News – February 2014

Policy Adoption

Hot off the presses! The latest edition of the Coalition’s annual policy analysis, The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2013, was released yesterday. Each year, the Coalition scores every ordinance and resolution in the country on ten elements of an effective Complete Streets policy. Of the more than 80 Complete Streets policies adopted across the country in 2013, the small Boston suburb of Littleton, MA, scored highest. Another 14 jurisdictions—large and small, urban, suburban and rural—were highlighted in the report for their well crafted Complete Streets policies, and representatives from most of the top-scoring communities participated in Smart Growth America’s webinar discussing their work. This year’s analysis found that adopted policies are getting stronger, with more jurisdictions including solid implementation steps than ever before. Read full report >>

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Hear the recap: The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2013 online discussion

best-cs-policies-2013-coverYesterday we unveiled The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2013 and to celebrate we hosted an online discussion with representatives from many of this year’s top-scoring communities. Panelists gave listeners a behind-the-scenes look at how many of this year’s policies were created, and provided insights for how other communities create strong policies of their own.

If you were not able to join us for yesterday’s event, an archived recording is now available.

Watch the archived recording

Watch the archived webinar
Download the presentation (PDF)

Joining yesterday’s event were Roger Millar, Director of the National Complete Streets Coalition; Chris Kuschel, Regional Planner, Metropolitan Area Planning Council (Massachusetts); Mayor James R. Walker of Peru, IN; Mark Demchek, Executive Director of the Miami County, IN YMCA; Karen Mendrala, Livability Planner for Fort Lauderdale, FL; Mayor Jonathan LaBonte of Auburn, ME; Craig Saddlemire, Chair of the Bike/Ped Committee for Lewiston/Auburn, ME; Rick Taintor, Planning Director for Portsmouth, NH; Andrew Fangman, City Planner for Muscatine, IA; Chris Schmiesing, City Planner for Piqua, OH; Jamie Parks, Complete Streets Program Manager for Oakland, CA; Bob Vinn, Assistant City Engineer for Livermore, CA; Aric Schroeder, City Planner for Waterloo, IA; and Mayor Jon Crews of Cedar Falls, IA.

Thank you to everyone who participated. The event provided great information for experts and newcomers alike about how public policies can build safer, more convenient streets for everyone.

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Announcing the best Complete Streets policies of 2013

Livermore, CALivermore, CA is included among the top of The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2013.

A total of 83 communities adopted Complete Streets policies in the United States in 2013. These laws, resolutions and planning and design documents encourage and provide for the safe access to destinations for everyone, regardless of age, ability, income or ethnicity, and no matter how they travel.

The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2013, released today by Smart Growth America’s National Complete Streets Coalition examines and scores each Complete Streets policy enacted in 2013. The report outlines ten ideal elements of a Complete Streets policy and scores individual policies based on these ideals. Policy elements refine a community’s vision for transportation, provide for many types of users, complement community needs and establish a flexible approach necessary for an effective Complete Streets process and outcome.

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National Complete Streets Coalition to unveil top Complete Streets policies of 2013

Indianapolis, INIndianapolis, IN had the highest scoring Complete Streets policy of 2012. Photo by Ian Freimuth via Flickr.

More than 80 communities passed Complete Streets policies in 2013, and on February 18, Smart Growth America’s National Complete Streets Coalition will unveil which ones were the best.

Each year, the Coalition analyzes Complete Streets policies enacted in the past year. These laws, resolutions, executive orders, policies and planning and design documents encourage and provide safe access to destinations for everyone, regardless of age, ability, income, ethnicity or how they travel.

Join us for an online event to celebrate this year’s best policies and to hear how communities everywhere can create streets that are safer and more convenient for everyone who uses them.

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Rina Cutler encourages cooperation between city and state DOTs at annual Complete Streets dinner

Rina CutlerRina Cutler addresses the National Complete Streets Coalition’s annual dinner.

Friends and partners of the National Complete Streets Coalition gathered in Washington, DC last night to celebrate the Complete Streets movement, to discuss the Coalition’s work over the last year and to recognize the annual support from the Coalition’s 50 partner organizations.

The evening’s featured guest was Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities for the city of Philadelphia. In her remarks, Cutler highlighted Philadelphia’s strategies for implementing Complete Streets. The idea of Complete Streets has grown from a minor issue endorsed by a small corps of local advocates into what Cutler described as a “citywide revolution” with widespread support.

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How do you shovel a bike lane? New resources for maintaining Complete Streets in snowy weather

nyc-dot-bike-lane-snowCrews clear snow from a pedestrian and bicycle path in New York City last week. Photo by New York City Department of Transportation via Twitter.

A large swath of the country is still digging out from the most recent round of winter snow storms, deploying plows, snow blowers, shovels, sand, salt and even cheese to keep people moving. Many of these strategies focus on keeping roads clear for drivers. What about for people who walk, bicycle or rely on transit?

Complete Streets is a process for funding, planning, designing, building, operating and minting community streets so that travel by all modes is safe and comfortable. In climates where snowfall is expected, Complete Streets mean thoughtful roadway design and appropriate plans and policies for snow and ice management for all users.

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You are invited to the fourth annual Complete Streets dinner

Rina_CutlerRina Cutler, Philadelphia’s Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities, will be our featured guest

The National Complete Streets Coalition will host its annual dinner next month—and we hope you’ll join us!

This year, we’re honored to have Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities for Philadelphia, as our featured guest. Hailed as a Public Works Leader of the Year and one of COMTO’s Women Who Move the Nation, she recently led efforts to develop Philadelphia’s Complete Streets Design Handbook, a model for Complete Streets implementation. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter appointed Ms. Cutler to her current position in 2008, where she is responsible for coordination and oversight of all transportation functions and several city agencies.

The National Complete Streets Coalition’s annual dinners bring together the top minds working for Complete Streets across the country, including our national Steering Committee members, our well-known corps of workshop instructors, staff from our Partner organizations—and you! Together, we’ll celebrate recent Complete Streets successes nationally and locally and forge friendships with colleagues and peers over informal discussion.

We’ll be dining on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 in Washington, DC’s Woodley Park neighborhood. Seats are available for $150. Head table seats are available for $200. Click here to reserve your tickets online. Current and new Complete Streets Partners receive a significant discount, and Partners at the Silver level and above are eligible to receive complimentary seats.

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