Of the $2.3 billion that Congress has given USDOT for transit capital investments since Trump took office, USDOT has distributed a meager 20 percent to transit projects waiting for funding. These avoidable delays are costing local communities money and putting jobs at risk.
On June 29 we hosted “Rethinking First & Last Mile: Transit-Driven Complete Streets”, the fifth installment in our monthly webinar series, Implementation & Equity 201: The Path Forward to Complete Streets. A recording of the webinar is now available above. You can also download the PDF of the presentation, or read the brief recap below.
The National Complete Streets Coalition is excited to continue our monthly webinar series, designed to help professionals from a variety of disciplines put Complete Streets principles into action. Implementation & Equity 201: The Path Forward to Complete Streets is exploring a new issue each month related to creating safer, healthier, more equitable streets.
Our next webinar in the series, Rethinking First & Last Mile: Transit-Driven Complete Streets will take place on Thursday, June 29, 2017 from 1:00-2:00 PM EDT. Speakers from Michael Baker International and the American Public Transportation Association will join the Coalition in answering questions such as: How can transit-driven Complete Streets provide vital connections to address the first/mile last mile problem? And how can transit agencies take on a more active role in Complete Streets design and implementation? This webinar will explore examples of how the Jacksonville Transportation Authority leveraged its transit system redesign to promote improved connectivity through Complete Streets. Speakers will rethink the concept of first mile/last mile on a granular scale, exploring what kinds of infrastructure are needed to provide safe, convenient transportation choices for transit-dependent communities. Registration is now open—we hope you’ll be able to join us.
Legislators on both sides of the aisle agree that public transportation systems provide many benefits to the communities they serve, and ballot measures across the country this year have revealed strong public support for public transportation. For communities interested in bringing services like these to their area, a focused, organized transit campaign can make all … Continued
Photo: Elvert Barnes via Flickr
This post is the seventh in a series of case studies about Complete Streets people, places, and projects. Catch the final one next month!
The Washington, DC region prides itself on robust bus service, and a recent change to bus stop accessibility standards is opening the system to even more people.
Thousands of people in the Washington, DC region take the bus each day, including people with disabilities. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides three basic criteria when defining an “accessible” bus stop. It should 1) have a firm landing surface; 2) be at least five feet wide and eight feet long; and 3) connect to the curb. Because when bus stops are narrow or located in a patch of grass, getting to and waiting at the bus stop isn’t just unpleasant for people with disabilities — it’s a barrier to travel.
As part of their public outreach process, DDOT asked residents to map their daily commutes with pins and string. Photo by thisisbossi via Flickr.
This post is the fifth in a series of case studies about Complete Streets people, places, and projects. Follow the full series over the next several weeks.
All too often, engaging residents in long-range transportation planning means little more than holding a few, sparsely attended evening presentations. For their 2040 transportation plan, however, Washington D.C.’s District Department of Transportation (DDOT) decided to take a completely different approach and create a diverse array of opportunities to provide input, both in-person and online, that were fun, interactive, and personal to get as many DC residents, visitors, workers, and commuters as possible to share their ideas for the city’s transportation future.
Photo: Roy Luck via Flickr
This post is the first in a series of case studies about Complete Streets people, places, and projects. Follow the full series over the next several weeks!
Houston’s bold plan to redesign its bus system—the System Reimagining Project—is akin to a prima-ballerina dancing the final act of Swan Lake. The plan is so elegant, the results so awe-inspiring, that it’s easy to miss all the hard work that led to this moment. A comprehensive, creative, and thoughtful public input and outreach process led to broad support for this revolutionary new bus system.
Let’s start with the magic. In 2012, Houston and Harris County’s Metropolitan Transit Authority, or METRO, recognized its bus system needed an update. No one had taken a hard look at the system in three decades, even though Houston had grown into a more polycentric city and METRO had built the first of several planned light rail lanes. Instead of making minor adjustments, METRO’s board, with the nudging of board member Christof Spieler, an urban planner and transit advocate, decided to see what the system could look like if it were designed from scratch. The new plan, an almost complete remodel of Houston’s current bus system, was approved by METRO’s board just three years later, in February of 2015.
Photo by John Greenfield
Core Values: Why American companies are moving downtown — Safe, convenient, and attractive streets are in demand, and a growing number of employers are moving to places where their employees can easily walk, bike, or take transit to lunch or a meeting with a client. In fact, hundreds of companies across the country have relocated and invested in walkable downtowns in the past five years. Join Smart Growth America on June 18 to dig into the who’s, how’s, and why’s–and to pick up some ideas for creating places more and more companies want to be. Register for the launch event >>
Safer Streets, Stronger Economies — The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) is spreading the word that Complete Streets approaches to transportation projects can help people get where they need to go safely—and contribute to economic development. The June edition of the ITE Journal features an article based on our research. And, on July 9, ITE will host a webinar with Geoff Anderson, President and CEO of Smart Growth America, and Dean Ledbetter, Senior Planning Engineer at North Carolina Department of Transportation, about the safety benefits of Complete Streets. Register >>
Artist’s rendering of light rail service through downtown Honolulu. Image via AIA Honolulu.
Honolulu, HI is known for its natural beauty. The city unfortunately also has third worst traffic in the nation. To help remedy that, the City of Honolulu is working to create alternate ways for residents to get around the island and George Atta, the Honolulu Planning Director and a member of Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council, is one of the leaders making it happen.
Atta grew up in Honolulu and has been in the planning profession for many years. Doing this work on a small island, he explains, makes many smart growth lessons more immediate.
“Planners on an island see the consequences of our actions pretty quickly,” Atta says, “The problems we create stay here. So it’s been easy for us to understand the benefits of a smart growth approach.”
A planned expansion of the Blue Line on Charlotte’s LYNX light rail system will connect the center city to the NoDA art district and University of North Carolina Charlotte Campus. Photo by Reconnecting America, via flickr.
Charlotte is the largest city in the state of North Carolina, with a metropolitan area population of 2.3 million as of 2013. Over the last half century Charlotte’s economy grew primarily around the financial sector, and as the home of Bank of America’s headquarters, the former headquarters of Wachovia, and a host of Fortune 500 companies the city was the second largest banking hub in the country when the economic recession hit in 2008. In recent years leaders in Charlotte have worked to make the city’s economy more resilient by cultivating and expanding other industries, particularly energy, logistics, defense and healthcare.
In line with these efforts, there is a growing movement among many city leaders to provide a high quality of life in Charlotte’s unique and diverse neighborhoods, which radiate out from the historic center city, in order to attract and retain new businesses and residents and promote Charlotte as a great place to live, work and play. At-Large City Council Member Vi Lyles, a member of Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council, is working to provide these neighborhoods with a greater variety of transportation options to help foster a sense of community and connection to the city among residents. “We are focusing on making Charlotte a place where people want to be. To do that, we have to provide those people with choices,” says Council Member Lyles.