Completing Our Streets: Strategies

AARP and Complete Streets in HawaiiAARP Volunteers rally for Complete Streets in Hawaii. Photo by Jackie Boland.

This post is the eighth and final in our twice-monthly series of excerpts from Completing Our Streets: The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks, the new book from Island Press by Barbara McCann, founder of the National Complete Streets Coalition. The book discusses the keys to the movement’s success, and how places and practitioners in the United States are tackling the challenges of putting a new transportation paradigm into daily practice.

A decade ago, in early December 2003, the term “Complete Streets” was first coined. Today’s excerpt celebrates the many Complete Streets supporters and active Coalition members that helped found the movement and continue to advance the adoption of Complete Streets policies and practices across the country.

All National Complete Streets Coalition Platinum Partners and those who upgrade to the next Partnership level will receive a signed copy of Completing Our Streets. Become a Coalition Partner today!

Completing Our Streets: From drudgery to metamorphosis

repaving
Maintenance activities, such as repaving a roadway, offer an opportunity for modest, low-cost improvements toward more complete streets. Photo by Barbara McCann.

This post is the sixth in a twice-monthly series of excerpts from Completing Our Streets: The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks, the new book from Island Press by Barbara McCann, founder of the National Complete Streets Coalition. The book discusses the keys to the movement’s success, and how places and practitioners in the United States are tackling the challenges of putting a new transportation paradigm into daily practice.

All National Complete Streets Coalition Platinum Partners and those who upgrade to the next Partnership level will receive a signed copy of Completing Our Streets. Become a Coalition Partner today!

From Chapter 5: Looking for Every Opportunity

Integrating a Complete Streets approach into maintenance and operations projects allows change to begin to happen right away, and such projects also have value precisely because they are pedestrian in the first sense of the word. In Anniston, Alabama, city councilman Jay Jenkins told the Anniston Star that the city’s new Complete Streets policy would be “a plodding kind of change.” The initial changes made to complete the streets can be modest and unimaginative, but within this drudgery lies the makings of metamorphosis.

Completing Our Streets: Who gets priority?

Health Line
Cleveland, OH’s HealthLine is a bus rapid transit (BRT) system that offers rail-like convenience with the flexibility of a bus. It connects Public Square to the Louis Stokes Station at Windermere in East Cleveland. Photo by EMBARQ Brasil via Flickr.

This post is the fifth in a twice-monthly series of excerpts from Completing Our Streets: The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks, the new book from Island Press by Barbara McCann, founder of the National Complete Streets Coalition. The book discusses the keys to the movement’s success, and how places and practitioners in the United States are tackling the challenges of putting a new transportation paradigm into daily practice.

All National Complete Streets Coalition Platinum Partners and those who upgrade to the next Partnership level will receive a signed copy of Completing Our Streets. Become a Coalition Partner today!

From Chapter 8: The Balancing Act: Setting Priorities for Different Users

Making a commitment to Complete Streets breaks open a tidy linear system that has traditionally delivered roads designed only to speed motor vehicles to their destinations. The transportation project pipeline was good at taking in a narrow set of inputs at one end and pouring out a finished road at the other. Agencies must now bring many more modes, voices, and considerations into the process all along the way. What was a pipeline can become something of a swamp; everyone involved may end up feeling caught in a morass of competing claims for limited roadway space and limited funding. Rather than simply delivering a project, transportation professionals must navigate their way toward a solution that may not quite satisfy anyone.

Complete Streets Chopped from Conference Bill

The Complete Streets provision included in the Senate transportation bill has been struck from the final bill during the conference process. The provision, Safety for Motorized and Non-Motorized Users, received bi-partisan support in the Senate and is based on a marker bill that received bi-partisan support in the House.

Taking the Silos Out of Transportation Safety

New research shows a relationship between strip-mall development and a higher likelihood of death or injury in traffic crashes for those 75 or older — building on previous research that streets safe for our most vulnerable users are better for everyone, regardless of who they are and how they travel. The complex variety of potential street users provides an opportunity for us to take a holistic approach to transportation and community planning, making our streets and towns safer and stronger.

New Poll Indicates National Support for Complete Streets

A new poll released by America Bikes yesterday is a telling indicator that Americans support Complete Streets — over 80% of respondents, in communities large and small, would like to see federal funding for bicycling and walking maintained or increased. These findings are consistent with other state and local polls that have shown American citizens want streets that work for everyone.

In Honor of Powell Calhoun and Donna Williams

The next time someone refers to a sidewalk as a too-expensive “amenity,” think about Powell Calhoun and Donna Williams. They were fatally hit by a driver as they traveled along a frontage road in Jackson, Mississippi that had no sidewalks for him to push her wheelchair.

Complete Streets Success Stories Focus of New Report

It’s a Safe Decision: Complete Streets in California, a report from the National Complete Streets Coalition and the Local Government Commission telling the successes of a Complete Streets approach in California, was released last week at an event with Representative Doris Matsui (CA-5), one of the Congressional sponsors of a federal Complete Streets policy.

Applying a Complete Streets Lens to Action on Capitol Hill

A Complete Streets approach recognizes that an individual may bike, walk, drive, and take transit all in the same day and aims to create a transportation system that helps her travel safely by any mode she chooses. Unfortunately, the House transportation bill devotes all its funding to highway projects. The Senate bill presents a more complete vision, but still needs to be fixed to better provide for those on foot or on bicycles.

No Complete Streets Measure in House Bill

With no Complete Streets provision, the just-released House Transportation bill ignores millions of Americans nationwide who want their transportation system to provide safe and convenient choices, such as walking, riding a bike, and catching a bus or train. This failure is in stark contrast to the bipartisan Complete Streets measure included in the Senate’s version of the bill.