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Complete Streets: Urban Design for all Users

Posted in Movements by Kate Archdeacon on April 9th, 2010

Source: Grist

Image: digiart2001 via flickr CC

From “Towns invest in smarter streets … in Mississippi” by Jonathan Hiskes

Two Mississippi towns want better options than auto-only streets, and now they’ve made it official. The towns of Tupelo (pop. 36,223) and Hernando (pop. 6,812) each passed Complete Streets legislation that ensures roads will be built and maintained for walkers, cyclists, and other forms of transportation—along with drivers.  This week St. Louis citizens voted to fund better mass transit. Now this in Mississippi—this stuff is getting around. Towns of these sizes don’t build a lot of transit infrastructure, so sidewalks, bike paths, and road safety features are all the better.

The National Complete Streets Coalition works to promote what its name suggests—streets designed for more than one use, and ones that work for children, seniors, wheelchair users, and sidewalk retailers. It’s fiscally responsible, says walkability guru Dan Burden.  “The big win for city government is that anything built to a walkable scale leases out for three to five times more money, with more tax revenue on less infrastructure,” he said in a news release.

Note that this is all about happier, healthier, and safer living. It just so happens to be sustainable, but you don’t even have to use environmental selling points if they’re too distracting.

From “Towns invest in smarter streets … in Mississippi” by Jonathan Hiskes for Grist.

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