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Environmental Sciences - Sustainable Development | Completing Our Streets - The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks

Completing Our Streets

The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks

McCann, Barbara

2013, XVI, 208 p.


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  • Practical information for practitioners and activists who want to influence the way transportation projects are conceived, designed, and built
  • Accessible and inspiring account of the complete streets movement from one of its founders
  • Case studies from a diverse range of cities and towns across the United States, including many smaller communities in middle America that are often overlooked

Across the country, communities are embracing a new and safer way to build streets for everyone—even as they struggle to change decades of rules, practice, and politics that prioritize cars. They have discovered that changing the design of a single street is not enough: they must upend the way transportation agencies operate. Completing Our Streets begins with the story of how the complete streets movement united bicycle riders, transportation practitioners and agencies, public health leaders, older Americans, and smart growth advocates to dramatically re-frame the discussion of transportation safety. Next, it explores why the transportation field has been so resistant to change—and how the movement has broken through to create a new multi-modal approach.

In Completing Our Streets, Barbara McCann, founder of the National Complete Streets Coalition, explains that the movement is not about street design. Instead, practitioners and activists have changed the way projects are built by focusing on three strategies: reframe the conversation; build a broad base of political support; and provide a clear path to a multi-modal process. McCann shares stories of practitioners in cities and towns from Charlotte, North Carolina to Colorado Springs, Colorado who have embraced these strategies to fundamentally change the way transportation projects are chosen, planned, and built.

The complete streets movement is based around a simple idea: streets should be safe for people of all ages and abilities, whether they are walking, driving, bicycling, or taking the bus. Completing Our Streets gives practitioners and activists the strategies, tools, and inspiration needed to translate this idea into real and lasting change in their communities.

Content Level » Professional/practitioner

Keywords » Bike lane - Complete streets - Sidewalk - Street design - Transportation

Related subjects » Geography - Sustainable Development

Table of contents 




Chapter 1. Why We Build Incomplete Streets

Chapter 2. How the Complete Streets Movement Succeeds

Chapter 3. Closing the Gap between Policy and Practice

Chapter 4. Process over Projects: Changing How Decisions Are Made

Chapter 5. Looking for Every Opportunity

Chapter 6. Practitioners as Champions

Chapter 7. Answering a Loaded Question: How Much Do Complete Streets Cost?

Chapter 8. The Balancing Act: Setting Priorities for Different Users

Chapter 9. Expanding Complete Streets

Appendix A: Case Study Finder

Appendix B: Complete Streets Resources


Selected Bibliography


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