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Complete Streets

    One result of the NY Bicycling Coalition's 2009 Legislative Day is the introduction of Assembly bill A08587 and Senate bill S5711 by NYS Assemblymen David F. Gantt (133rd Assembly Dist., Monroe County) & Jeffrey Dinowitz (81st Assembly Dist., Bronx County) and by NYS Senators Martin Malavé Dilan (17th Senatorial Dist., Kings County (Brooklyn)) and Ruben Diaz (32nd Senatorial Dist., Bronx County) for consideration by the Assembly and Senate. 

    The New York Bicycling Coalition, the American Association of Retired Person's state office, Green Options-Buffalo, Transportation Alternatives, and several other organizations successfully lobbied for this legislation to be brought to the floor of both the Assembly & the Senate from the Transportation Committees in each house. It now is ready to be voted on by the full Assembly and the full Senate.

Click here for a summary and the complete text of this bill:
        An act to amend the highway law, in relation to enabling safe access to public roads for all users.

        Be a bicycling and pedestrian advocate! Call, write, and email (use all 3 manners of communication) your Assemblyperson and NYS Senator to have the Assembly & Senate vote on this bill during this NYS legislative session. Contact information is a bit lower down on this web page. The legislative session ends on Monday, June 22, 2009.

    It is important for you to directly express your support for these bills to Assembymen Gantt & Dinowitz and Senators Dilan & Diaz. Doing so shows these legislators the importance of bicyclists as a group of voters in New York State. It is important for you to directly contact your NYS legislator to ask him or her to support these bills.
    You simply need to send a postcard (28˘ each at your nearest US Post Office) to these four legislators plus one post card to your Assemblyperson and your NYS Senator. For a minimum investment of $1.68, you have the ability to improve bicycling and pedestrian facilities throughout New York State, including in your village, town or city!
    Don't know who your Assemblyman or Senator is? Wow! No wonder bicycling conditions are not impoving in the State! Go to these pages to enter your address and zip code to find your Assemblyman & NYS Senator:
        Who's my Assemblyperson? 

        Who's my NYS Senator?

        Don't know where your local post office located, go to this web site: Locate a Post Office 

        Clicking on the highlighted names below will bring you directly to their offical contact web page:

        Assemblyman Gantt (By post and telephone only.)
            Hon. David F. Gantt     and    Hon. David F. Gantt
            LOB 830                                74 University Ave.
            Albany NY 12248                   Rochester NY 14605
            585 454-3670                        518 455-5606

        Assemblyman Dinowitz
            Hon. Jeffrey Dinowitz     and    Hon. Jeffrey Dinowitz
            LOB 824                                   3107 Kingsbridge Ave.
            Albany, NY 12248                     Bronx NY 10463
            518 455-5965                           718 796-5345

        Senator Martin Malavé Dilan
            Hon. Martin Malavé Dilan    and        Hon. Martin Malavé Dilan
            811 Legislative Office Building         786 Knickerbocker Ave.
            Albany NY 12247                               Brooklyn NY 11207
            518 455-2177                                    718 573-1726

        Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz
            307 Legislative Office Building     and    1733 E. 172nd St.
            Albany NY 12247                                     Bronx NY 10472
            518 455-2511                                          718 991-3161
            diaz@senate.state.ny.us


TITLE: BILLS A08587 & S5711
    An act to amend the highway law, in relation to enabling safe access to public roads for all users.
    Summary: "Enables safe access to public roads for all users by requiring that all transportation improvements shall improve safety, access, and mobility for all travelers regardless of age or ability." [A wonderful, very important, & never before legally stated provision for bicyclists & pedestrians.]

    Bills A08587 & S5711 Summary:
        SPONSOR    Gantt (MS) COSPNSR    Dinowitz
        MLTSPNSR   Amendment to S10, Hway Legislation
  
     BILL NO A08587 Actions
        05/29/2009 referred to transportation
        An act to amend the highway law, in relation to enabling safe access to public roads for all users.

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
    To design more complete streets that enable safe access for all users: bicyclists, public transportation vehicles and passengers, motorists, and pedestrians of all ages and abilities.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
    This legislation requires  bicycle  and pedestrian ways be included in the planning and development of state, county, and local transportation facilities, plans,  and  programs.  All transportation improvements shall improve safety, access, and mobility for all travelers in New York, regardless of age or ability, and shall recognize bicycle, pedestrian, and transit modes as integral to the transportation system.
    In addition, bicycle and pedestrian ways shall be established in conjunction with the construction, reconstruction, or other change of any state, county, or local transportation facility, with special emphasis given to projects in or within-three miles of an urban area. Accommodations will include, but not be limited to, paved shoulders suitable for use by bicyclists, lane stripping, share the road signage, crosswalks, pedestrian control signals, curb cuts and ramps.
    The legislation also requires a best practice report to be published by the Department of Transportation no later than two years after the bill becomes law showing how transportation agencies have changed their procedures to routinely design safe, effective multi-modal facilities for travelers of all ages and abilities.

JUSTIFICATION:
    The streets of our cities and  towns  are  an   important part  of  the  livability  of  our   communities.  Our  streets should be designed for everyone, whether young   or  old,  motorist  or  bicyclist, walker  or   wheelchair user, or bus rider. Complete streets are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users. Complete streets policies direct transportation planners and engineers to consistently design with all users in mind.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2007, a pedestrian was hit by a motorist and killed every 113 minutes (about every two hours) - a total of 4,654 fatalities nationwide.  Forty percent  of  these   fatalities were people 50 years of age and older. In addition, NHTSA found that a pedestrian is injured by motorists every  8 minutes with over 70,000 pedestrians injured in 2007.

A  2008  report  issued  by  the Tri-State Transportation Campaign found older pedestrians are far more likely to be killed  while   walking  than their  younger  neighbors.  The report focusing on New York City and the surrounding counties found that the fatality rates for older pedestrians are far higher than in the rest of the country.

The report stated that between 2005 and 2007,  255  pedestrians  age   65 years and older were killed on downstate New York roads, Though comprising   less  than  12 percent of the area's population, people aged 65 and older accounted for 30 percent of the total pedestrian fatalities during the  three-year period. Those age 75 years and older represent less than 6 percent of downstate New York's population, but more than 18  percent of pedestrian deaths.

A  new poll released by AARP in 2008 found that while many people age 50 plus are trying to move away from car transportation as a result of high gas prices, almost half (47%) of poll responders say they  cannot  cross the main roads safely.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
This is new legislation.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE  DATE:
This act shall take effect 180 days after it shall have become a law.

Next Step 
        Whether or not the Complete Streets bills are passed and signed into law by the Governor you, yes you, must become an activist for better bicycling conditions.
    1. You must contact your local MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization, the folks who monitor and distribute Federal Highway Administration, gasoline tax money), your local NYS Department of Transportation office, your county highway department, and the department in your city, town, or village responsible for roadway planning.
    2. You must be placed on the meeting notification list.
    3. You must attend those meetings, boring as they are. 
    4. You must speak at those meetings, even if all you say is "bicyclists use this road, you must accomodate bicyclists include safe bicycling facilities." 
    5. You must submit, via email and paper, statements concerning including bicycling facilities on the roadway/bridge/trail being planned, considered, or discussed.
    6. You must try to convince your bicycling compatriots to be a bicycling activist.


[ Home ] [ Books & Maps ] [ Order Form ] [ Author ] [ Table of Contents ] [ Book Trade ] [ Bike Events ]
[ Great Lakes Bike Books ] [ Lake Ontario Bike Book ] [ Lake Erie Bike Book ] [ Lake Michigan Bike Book ] [ Lake Huron Bike Book ]
[ New York State Bike Books ] [ Erie Canal Bike Book ] [ Finger Lakes Bike Book
[ Other Maps & Books ] [ New Zealand Biking ] [ French Canal Biking & Barging ] [ Lot River Canoe Guide ] [ Stratford, Ontario ]
[ Bike Events ] [ Finger Lakes Biking Events ] [ Bicycling Statistics ] [ Links ] [ Comments ] [ Improved Rtes ] [ Featured Biking Areas ]
[ Newsletter Content Articles ] [ Boxing a Bike ] [ N. Am. Bike Touring Info ] [ Complete Streets ] [ Bike Advocacy Articles ]

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Last modified: June 12, 2009