FDOT’s new Complete Streets implementation plan will take policy into practice

In September 2014, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) adopted a Complete Streets policy to help make streets safer for everyone in the state. Now, a new plan created in partnership with Smart Growth America will help turn that policy into on-the-ground changes.

On December 7, 2015, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) released its Complete Streets Implementation Plan, an ambitious and comprehensive commitment to change the way roads are designed and built in Florida to make them safer for all types of travelers, while also promoting economic development and enhancing quality of life. FDOT developed the plan in partnership with Smart Growth America and our program the National Complete Streets Coalition over a period of nine months through our Multimodal Development and Delivery technical assistance process.

For many years, Florida ranked among the most dangerous states in the nation for pedestrians, with disproportionately high rates of pedestrian fatalities according to our 2011 report, Dangerous by Design. The department’s 2014 Complete Streets policy laid the foundations for making streets safer. Early last year FDOT took the next step and asked Smart Growth America to help fully integrate a Complete Streets approach into the department’s practices, decisions, and investments.

The Complete Streets Implementation Plan proposes a two-year schedule, and establishes milestones and a process for monitoring progress to keep the initiative on track. It also outlines a five-part framework and process to ensure FDOT addresses the needs of all users:

  1. Revising guidance, standards, manuals, policies, and other documents
  2. Updating decision-making processes
  3. Modifying approaches for measuring performance
  4. Managing internal and external communications and collaboration during implementation
  5. Providing ongoing education and training

Passing a Complete Streets policy is the first step in making streets that are safer by design, and creating an implementation plan like this is the single best way to make those policies a reality. Smart Growth America looks forward to continuing our work with FDOT, and helping other communities around the country develop and implement Complete Streets policies.

Smart Growth America and the National Complete Streets Coalition are available to help state and local agencies learn how to balance the needs of all users, develop Complete Streets policies, and effectively implement those policies. Interested in working with us to make sure streets in your state or community are safe and comfortable for everyone? Contact Emiko Atherton to learn more about how we can help.

Complete Streets