Hartford, CT (July 1, 2014) – As part of a new “complete streets” initiative, Bike Walk Connecticut released a first-of-its-kind ranking of the state’s cities and towns on how bike- and walk-friendly they are. Simsbury (1), New Haven (2), New Britain (3), Glastonbury (4), and Middletown (5) claim top honors as the five most bike- and walk-friendly communities. Click here for full results.
The scorecard and rankings are based on an online, statewide public opinion survey that ran this spring and was open to anyone who lives or works in Connecticut. The rankings are also based on municipal leadership and engagement efforts—whether cities or towns have bicycle and pedestrian master plans; citizen task forces or advisory groups; complete streets policies; and whether they have conducted any public outreach efforts related to cycling, walking or complete streets.
The surveys and scorecard are expected to be conducted annually as part of Bike Walk Connecticut’s new five-year initiative to make it safer and easier to walk and bike by implementing “complete streets” in cities and towns across Connecticut. Complete streets make it easier and safer for people to get around on foot or by bike, so they can be more physically active.
Kelly Kennedy, Executive Director of Bike Walk Connecticut, explains that “We want this project to encourage cities and towns to take a really robust approach to complete streets and being bike- and walk-friendly. Being able to get around safely by bike or on foot isn’t just a fad or a health issue or environmental issue. It’s an economic development issue. Towns that are bike- and walk-friendly are great places to live, work, shop and play.” Bike Walk Connecticut has also started to develop an online repository for complete streets resources.
What are Complete Streets?
Complete Streets are streets that are designed to be safe for everyone to use. Complete Streets make it easier and safer to walk and bike to work, to school, to transit, for errands, or just for pleasure and exercise. Connecticut’s Complete Streets law (Conn. Gen. Stat. §13-153f) requires pedestrians, cyclists, and transit users to be routinely considered in the planning, designing, construction and operation of all roads.
About the Project:
This project is made possible through the financial support of the Connecticut Department of Public Health through Cooperative Agreement 1305 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the purpose of which is to promote statewide implementation of policies and actions to promote health and prevent and control chronic diseases.
About Bike Walk Connecticut:
Bike Walk Connecticut is a statewide, member-supported 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that works to make Connecticut a better place to bike and walk. For more information and updates on this Complete Streets Initiative, visit www.bikewalkct.org.
This publication does not express the views of the Connecticut Department of Public Health or the State of Connecticut. The views and opinions expressed are those of the authors.
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