Complete Streets in Los Angeles County
February 28, 2013 3 Comments
Today, many are soaking up the knowledge and networking with great peers in Complete Streets work in downtown Los Angeles at the UCLA Luskin Center’s Complete Streets Conference. Coincidentally, right down the street from this conference at Metro’s Board meeting today, the board took at step towards exploring Complete Streets as well and approved a motion from the Policy and Programming Committee, see item #18 of board agenda. The agenda item included an amendment for report back with research and evaluation of current checklists, designs and call for projects on complete streets and multi-modal related criteria. Full list of action items included below.
The Safe Routes to School National Partnership, Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition and many other partners and supporters have been discussing how the County could elevate their support of active transportation. We are pleased to see Metro leadership and staff respond by adopting #18 of the board agenda today.
Metro is currently reviewing 2013 Call for Project applications from local jurisdictions, and interestingly enough almost half of the Call for Projects applications this year were for walking and biking projects. Cities are voting with their time and energy and walking and biking are their priorities. And today the Metro board began steps to consider addressing these local priorities and allocate additional money to walking and biking projects in this cycle as well as look at other key ways Metro investments can support all modes in every project. Today’s motion calls for a staff report back in April.
Here’s what the Board asked for a report on:
- Report back on the quality of active transportation projects submitted in the 2013 Call, with a recommendation for funding marks based on determined quality for the 2013 funding cycle.
- Prepare a report on the current state of all Call for Projects funding cycles, including a measure of effectiveness of each modal category and levels of funding, and work with stakeholders to make recommendations for what should be adjusted for the 2015 Call for Project cycle.
- Consider including a “complete streets” modal category in the 2015 Call for Projects cycle, or adjusting scoring criteria to give greater weight to projects that integrate all modes of transportation and foster complete streets.
- Report back on how each MTA transit corridor project currently in design or under construction is working with cities to incorporate robust bicycle and pedestrian improvements to facilitate first mile / last mile transit access.
- Report back on MTA’s existing project initiation checklist for major capital projects and analyze best practices to include any additional active transportation elements.
- Evaluate and propose changes to MTA’s current design criteria to make it easier to incorporate stair channels or ramps so that bicyclists can wheel their bikes safely up and down staircases.
- Work with cities across Los Angeles County to collect mode-split, economic, safety, and other relevant data to further justify the need for active transportation projects and demonstrate before and after results.
- Look at reductions in station area parking to fund active transportation linkages and infrastructure around MTA stations.
This is exciting and inspiring new, especially as people discuss Complete Streets policy down the street and implementation! Our partners in San Diego County are doing similar efforts to develop a SANDAG complete streets policy. Stay tuned for more details and email Jessica Meaney if you’d like to find out more.