The City of New Orleans and Jefferson Parish have made great strides in building out their bicycle networks and encouraging more people to bike, but much more work needs to be done to prioritize low-income areas, communities of color, and places with high rates of crashes and chronic diseases. To help achieve this goal, the National Complete Streets Coalition is pleased to release our latest report, Complete Streets for Health Equity: An Evaluation of New Orleans and Jefferson Parish.
In 2011, the City of New Orleans adopted a Complete Streets ordinance calling for, among other steps, annual evaluation of Complete Streets implementation, but the city has yet to deliver on this promise. We collaborated with the New Orleans-based nonprofit Bike Easy to create a list of performance measures New Orleans, Jefferson Parish, and jurisdictions around the country can use to maximize the benefit of Complete Streets projects and investments, particularly for the most vulnerable users of the road. The report includes four categories of performance measures and uses many of them to evaluate the success of Complete Streets in these jurisdictions with health equity in mind.
Bike Easy held an event earlier this month to share the report with key stakeholders throughout the New Orleans region. To learn more, check out their recap of the event or view the recordings of the panels and presentations. You can also read some reactions to the report in New Orleans and in Jefferson Parish.
We’re excited to see how Complete Streets in New Orleans and Jefferson Parish progress as a result of this report. We hope our health equity performance measures and recommendations also serve as useful resources for jurisdictions around the country who want to make sure Complete Streets programs prioritize those who can benefit from them most.