FOR RELEASE: Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Today, the City of South Bend’s Complete Streets plan was recognized as the third best in the nation in Smart Growth America’s Best Complete Streets Policies of 2015. A Complete Streets approach creates an integrated transportation system that supports safe travel for people of all ages and abilities, including pedestrians, cyclists, transit riders, and motorists.
“This is yet another positive national recognition for South Bend—this time thanks to our efforts to create safer, smarter, better streets for our residents,” Mayor Pete Buttigieg says. “South Bend’s Complete Streets policy will create a more welcoming environment for all residents, support better quality of life, and give us a more vibrant economy.”
Reading, Pennsylvania finished first in Smart Growth America’s analysis, with West Hartford, Connecticut coming in second. South Bend’s policy tied with Park Forest, Illinois, and Longmeadow, Massachusetts as the third best in the nation, scoring 92.8 out of a possible 100.
South Bend adopted a Complete Streets Policy last year. The adoption of this policy is one milestone encouraged in the Mayors’ Challenge, a U.S. Department of Transportation initiative in which South Bend is a participant. Complete Streets improvements include sidewalks, bike lanes, accessible public transportation stops, frequent and safe crossing opportunities, median islands, accessible pedestrian signals, curb extensions, narrower travel lanes, and roundabouts.
Examples of the Complete Streets approach can be found in completed projects within the City’s Smart Streets initiative such as East Jefferson Boulevard and Lincolnway West. Complete
Streets principles also form the strategic foundation for the conversion of South Bend’s Main and Michigan/St. Joseph streets from one-way streets to two-way streets. In 2015, communities across the country passed a total of 82 Complete Streets policies, and nationwide a total of 899 Complete Streets policies are now in place. Also 32 state governments
or agencies, 76 regional organizations, and 663 individual municipalities have all adopted such policies to create safer, more efficient transportation networks. Each year, the National Complete Streets Coalition analyzes newly passed Complete Streets policies. Ideal policies include a community’s vision for transportation, provide for many types of users, complement community needs, and establish a flexible project delivery approach. For additional information, visit smartgrowthamerica.org/completestreets.