We have a tremendous opportunity to transform the cities, county towns and rural areas in our region to be places that are safe and inviting for people to walk and bicycle in their daily routine.
So, don’t believe the myth that it can only happen in urban areas. With a little work to design and implement superior bicycle and pedestrian facilities, we can quickly create great places to live, work and play right here at home:
- People in small towns want to bike too, it’s not just an urban phenomenon: The share of work trips made by bicycle in small towns is nearly double that of urban centers.
- Significant funding is available: Transportation Enhancements has provided twice the funding per capita in rural America than in big cities. And is the nation’s largest funding source for trails, walking and bicycling. Also, this year the State of California increased the amount dedicated to biking and walking transportation projects, to the highest level ever. And there is a priority on spending these funds in cities and towns like those in our region.
- People in small towns prioritize active transportation facilities over auto-related projects: Among a list of transportation priorities—including major roads and long-distance travel—rural Americans selected sidewalks as “important” more often than any other transportation need.
Active Transpiration Beyond Urban Centers: Walking and Bicycling in Small Towns and Rural America. Report by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.
Available here: www.railstotrails.org/BeyondUrbanCenters
We have to stop building transportation through communities and instead build communities through transportation.’ Unfortunately, as logical as this may sound, Departments of Transportation and Public Works don’t often follow this path.
Article here: A small town rightsizing success story
The problem with the suburbs isn’t that they are not the city. The problem with the suburbs is the same problem as the city: they had a bad 5 or 6 decades of urban design.
Article here: Suburbs are not the problem its bad 20th Century design