Last week’s NewsHour featured a Blueprint America piece on Dubuque, Iowa and their efforts to be even more livable. Part of their citizen-driven efforts include revitalizing a downtown area – the Historic Millwork District. Dubuque was awarded a $5.6 million TIGER grant to build complete streets that will allow new residents to walk, bike, or take public transportation to downtown employment.
Dan Burden visited Charlotte, North Carolina recently and shot several great videos of complete streets projects. Charlotte, with its award-winning Urban Street Design Guidelines, is a leader in complete streets policy implementation. Dan’s videos highlight the very successful East Boulevard road diet, which converted a four lane arterial roadway into a complete street with planted medians, pedestrian refuges, and bike lanes. He also visits “America’s Best Designed Intersection.”
Speaking of road diets, Michael Bohn write about Long Beach, California‘s use of road diets and curb extensions to be more a livable community. At the intersection of First Street and Lindon Avenue, curb extensions have slowed traffic flow, but the shorter pedestrian crossing has kept cars moving through the intersection smoothly.
Hennepin County, Minnesota is rolling out its complete streets policy on Portland Avenue. Due for a mill and overlay, the County has proposed adding bicycle lanes and a creating a center turn lane when restriping the road later this summer.
And, in an update from yesterday’s post on Michigan‘s surging interest in complete streets, the state House Transportation Committee voted unanimously to pass complete streets bills HB 6151 and HB 6152 out of committee, with recommendations. This final revision no longer requires local road agencies or municipalities to adopt policies, but will require the Michigan DOT to do so (as well as develop a ‘model’ policy for municipalities and counties). The bills will now be referred to the House floor for a second reading, followed by a vote by the full House of Representatives.
All of this activity is evidence of grassroots support for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s policy statement that calls for full inclusion of pedestrians and bicyclists in transportation projects, with particular attention paid to transit riders and people of all ages and abilities. Our friends at the Alliance for Biking and Walking and the League of American Bicyclists are working to get formal statements of support for this policy from communities across the country. Check out the League’s blog for more details.