Business Leaders Discuss Complete Streets Policies for Los Angeles County

Notes from our meeting on November 13, 2013

Last week, the Safe Routes to School National Partnership (National Partnership), Fixing Angelenos Stuck In Traffic (FAST), and the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) hosted a breakfast meeting for business leaders in the Los Angeles area to discuss the potential opportunities and challenges for a County level Complete Streets policy. This meeting built off of previous one one one listening sessions with business leaders in an effort to expand this ongoing dialogue and refine our recommendations for Metro.

By working with the leadership of Executive Director Hilary Norton at FAST, we have met with the following leaders from the transportation, business and development communities to hear perspectives about opportunities and challenges with implementing a Complete Streets Policy for Los Angeles County over the past two months:

Discussing economic benefits for Complete Streets for LA County through a economic development frame

  • Alta Planning and Design
  • Auto Club of Southern California (AAA)
  • Building Industry Association Southern California
  • Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA/GLA)
  • Central City Association
  • City of Pasadena
  • Fixing Angelenos Stuck in Traffic (FAST
  • LA Mayor’s Office
  • Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce
  • Melendrez
  • UCLA, Luskin Center – Complete Streets Initiative
  • Urban Land Institute
  • Valley Industry & Commerce Association VICA

Why Complete Streets County level policy discussion? In December 2012, Metro adopted a Countywide Sustainability Planning Policy and Implementation Plan that outlined steps to expand and improve Metro’s role as a leader in sustainability. To implement the Sustainability Planning Policy, Metro is moving forward with a Complete Streets Policy and multimodal performance metrics for transportation projects with a proposed schedule for adoption in spring of 2014. A well developed LA County Complete Streets Policy can encourage greater multi-modal travel throughout the region, which will reduce congestion, attract the best and brightest talent and industries to locate in our region, and revitalize our economy. In order to ensure that Metro adopts a strong policy that includes input from all sectors, we are working with partners to provide best practices to their staff and the Metro Board of Directors. This fall we have focused efforts through the lense of economic growth opportunities, we want to encourage a Metro Complete Streets Policy that reflect the best ideas from key business leaders in Los Angeles County who are working everyday to create and retain jobs in our region.

What we heard:

  • our communities want complete streets and are aware of some but not all of the benefits
  • local return investments are misunderstood – they’re small and not working for complete streets
  • cities and developers will respond to Metro’s policy and funding priorities – any standardization across cities, developed in concert with developers would be welcome
  • a complete streets countywide policy can shift us away from measuring our success from sole focus of vehicular success and shift to measure all modes.
  • this is an opportunity to get different agencies and departments on the same page about how streetscape ideal design/implementation
  • could help Los Angeles County get more competitive for federal funding
  • its an opportunity to be forward thinking and define our goals and outcomes
  • there is a strong need to develop performance metrics and prioritization areas and businesses and developers need to be involved in this discussion

Meeting Handouts:

Articles/Resources

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