Bipartisan Bill Proposes National Complete Streets Policy

California Democrat Doris Matsui and Ohio Republican David Joyce are co-sponsors of the Safe Streets Act of 2015. Image: Smart Growth America
California Democrat Doris Matsui and Ohio Republican David Joyce are co-sponsors of the Safe Streets Act of 2015. Image: Smart Growth America

Streets that safely accommodate everyone, from motorists to cyclists, pedestrians, and transit users — complete streets — have become policy for many American communities, having been implemented in more than 700 local jurisdictions and states around the country. A new bill in Washington attempts, again, to make complete streets the federal standard as well.

Maybe the time has come. Jeri Mintzer at Smart Growth America explains:

Late yesterday, Representatives Doris Matsui (D-CA) and David Joyce (R-OH) introduced the Safe Streets Act of 2015 (HR 2071), a bill which would require all new federally-funded transportation projects to use a Complete Streets approach to planning, designing, and building roads.

Joining them is an impressive bipartisan coalition of co-sponsors, including Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), Susan Brooks (R-IN), Bill Johnson (R-OH), Chris Gibson (R-NY), Tom Reed (R-NY), David Valadao (R-CA), Eleanor Holmes-Norton (D-DC), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Steve Israel (D-NY), Elizabeth Esty (D-CT), Dina Titus (D-NV), John Lewis (D-GA), Andre Carson (D-IN), and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD).

Smart Growth America urges readers who don’t see their representative on that list to take action:

In the coming weeks Congress will debate this and several other transportation issues as the May 31 deadline for new transportation funding draws near. Your representative needs to hear from you that this is an issue you care about and support.

Elsewhere on the Network today: Streets.mn says trail users shouldn’t be forced to stop at every intersection on some of Minneapolis’s most widely ridden commuter cycling routes. ATL Urbanist wonders what it would take to really make a dent in the share of American commuters who drive to work. And Transportation for America details the extent of Minnesota’s deficient bridge problem.