The Ultimate Guide to Creating Walkable Streets

“Here at Strong Towns, we’re advocates for a simple concept we like to call “”slow the cars”” because we’ve seen in city after city that slowing down cars makes our communities more prosperous and resilient — not to mention safer.

But, while this concept is simple, the reasoning behind it and the path to get to safer streets is, by no means, easy. Today, we’re sharing our ultimate guide to building slower, more walkable streets, filled with helpful articles and resources you can use to #slowthecars in your town. We’ve broken it down into 4 key sections that will explain why we need walkable streets, how to tell if your streets aren’t walkable, and resources for building walkable streets, plus inspiring stories that will demonstrate how to build safer streets.”

Complete Streets Implementation Complete Streets Policy

How to Turn a Stroad into a Street (or a Road)

“Our national transportation conversation has us obsessing over finding more money to continue to do the same thing. This is only making us poorer.

Instead, we need to focus on finding ways to make better use of our existing investments. This means we need to spend our energy converting our most expensive, least productive and most dangerous transportation investment — our stroads — into either wealth-producing streets (to create a place) or highly productive roads (to connect productive places). The website shows you how to do just that.”

Complete Streets Implementation Complete Streets Policy

Streets as Places Action Pack

This user-friendly guide addresses the common challenges local advocates face when working to improve streets. Are you looking to create better streets in your neighborhood or community? Have you gotten discouraged by bureaucratic red tape or simple lack of communication? Or, are you passionate about great streets but struggling to get neighbors or city officials to share your enthusiasm or vision for people-centered public spaces?

Active transportation Community Engagement Complete Streets Implementation Complete Streets Policy

Understanding How the Built Environment Influences Transportation Choice

“One of the biggest factors in deciding which transportation mode you’ll use is the built environment. The infrastructure that surrounds us determines which modes get used the most and which the least.

Think about it like this: do you want to bike on a three-lane highway, or on a protected bike lane? If you chose the protected bike lane – or driving on the three-lane highway – the built environment influenced your decision.

These are some of the ways the built environment influences travel behavior. Many of them are interrelated. I”

Active transportation Complete Streets Implementation

Understanding the Basics of Transportation Choice

“At Mobility Lab, we spend a lot of time researching people’s transportation behavior and why they make the choices they do. What made you bike to work yesterday, but drive alone today?

Creating a sustainable, efficient, and equitable transportation network requires more than just building a new streetcar line. We need to consider what people consider when they make a mode choice, or else they won’t use the transportation options we invest in.”

Active transportation Community Engagement Complete Streets Implementation

Pedestrians First: Tools for a Walkable City

Walkability is a crucial first step in creating sustainable transportation in an urban environment. Effectively understanding and measuring the complex ecology of walkability has proven challenging for many organizations and governments, given the various levels of policy-making and implementation involved. In the past, Western and Eurocentric standards have permeated measurement attempts and have included data collection practices that are too complicated to have utility in many parts of the world or at a level beyond that of the neighborhood. In order to expand the measurement of walkability to more places and to promote a better understanding of walkability, ITDP has developed Pedestrians First. This tool will facilitate the understanding and the measurement of the features that promote walkability in urban environments around the world at multiple levels. With a better global understanding of walkability, and more consistent and frequent measurement of the walkability of urban environments, decision-makers will be empowered to enact policies that create more walkable urban areas.

Active transportation Complete Streets Implementation

Safety Demonstration Projects: Case Studies from Orlando, FL, Lexington, KY, and South Bend, IN

To test out creative approaches to safer street design, the National Complete Streets Coalition launched the Safe Streets Academy. We worked with three cities around the country to build skills in safer street design, creative placemaking, and community engagement, then helped the cities put these skills into practice. Through demonstration projects, the City of Orlando, FL, the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, KY, and the City of South Bend, IN transformed their streets, intersections, and neighborhoods into slower, safer places for people. Communities around the country can learn from the stories of these demonstration projects to test out low-cost ways to create safer streets.

These case studies highlight lessons learned from these demonstration projects, including how the projects helped these cities build trust with the community and with other jurisdictions, test out new approaches for safer street design and make quick adjustments as needed, and change the conversation about the importance of slower, safer streets.

Active transportation Complete Streets Implementation

Back to most recently added Resources »