‘Complete Streets’ program helps retrofit NJ towns for pedestrians and cyclists
A program to make streets in Jersey towns more user-friendly for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers is a collaboration between Rutgers University and the state Transportation Department.
James Sinclair of the New Jersey Bicycle and Pedestrian Resource Center at Rutgers says Complete Streets "is really a push to make streets that are designed for all, for everybody."
He says the first thing that a town has to do is pass a "Complete Streets" policy.
"Basically, their city council saying that as they move forward with road projects, when they look at a new project, they are going to take everybody into account. Once they pass this policy, they can move forward into implementation. There is a good amount of help available from the state, in the form of grants and such."
"Safety is definitely a No. 1 concern. It is why a lot of the grant funding is available for ways to make intersections safer, ways to make corridors safer."
Sinclair says there are multiple benefits, such as encouraging people to walk in their town and making it attractive to visitors, which can help local commerce.
"Municipalities that have made their streets safer are more attractive. People want to go there, they want to shop there and they want to live there."
New Jersey has 135 municipalities and eight counties currently advancing Complete Streets policies. More information about the program is also available at njbikeped.org.
Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5
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