Complete Streets Resolution Approved Unanimously by Tulsa City Council

February 3, 2012 in Complete Streets

PDF File: Complete Streets Resolution Approved by City Council

TULSA – The Tulsa City Council unanimously passed a Complete Streets resolution at Thursday night’s meeting.

The resolution directs city staff to design, plan and operate streets to “provide for a balanced, responsible, and equitable way to accommodate all users including pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit riders, freight providers, emergency responders and motorists.”

The resolution also directs city staff to develop a Complete Streets Policy Guide and attend training to stay educated on the latest and best practices.

Councilor Blake Ewing explained his support for Complete Streets by highlighting its context-sensitive nature.

“What might be really appropriate in the TU area might be wildly inappropriate in South Tulsa,” said Ewing.

“We’ve oftentimes, in planning our streets, had kind of a one-size-fits-all kind of approach”, said Ewing. “I think this is fixing something, in fact, that may have been broken.”

Councilor Phil Lakin expressed excitement for the resolution because “when we do have widening projects, we will be able to add sidewalks at the same time as the streets are being widened, which is a much more efficient use of our contractors.”

Lakin added, “then we can get our kids from the neighborhoods to the schools.”

Councilor G.T. Bynum said Complete Streets was about expanding transportation options.

“Right now, everything we do related to transportation is focused on cars,” said Bynum. “And yet, there are other options out there that might be more appropriate in different areas to allow people to get around.”

Complete Streets on Council Agenda Tonight

February 2, 2012 in Complete Streets

TULSA – The City Council is set to discuss Complete Streets at tonight’s 6pm meeting.

The city’s Engineering Services Department and Planning Department presented modifications to a proposed Complete Streets resolution to the City Council in Tuesday’s Public Works Committee meeting.

The modified resolution is scheduled to be read at Thursday’s City Council meeting. At that point, councilors can suggest changes to the language of the resolution, vote on the resolution, or kick it back to a committee meeting.

The original Complete Streets resolution, submitted by the Transportation Advisory Board in December, directs the city to plan and design future street projects to accommodate “pedestrians, bicyclists, and public transit riders of all ages and abilities, amongst vehicular traffic.”

The Difference Between a Road and a Street

December 20, 2011 in Complete Streets

The Complete Streets concept is one of the most significant developments in street design for bicyclists and pedestrians in the last decade. But the addition of bike lanes and sidewalks to a project is not enough to make a Complete Street. If engineers and planners don’t consider the surrounding land use of the area, if they don’t consider all modes of travel equally in the street design from the outset, if the automobile is still the primary beneficiary of the design with bicyclists and pedestrians a mere afterthought, you won’t get a Complete Street – you’ll get a complete road.

According to the Smart Transportation Guidebook, the desire to go ‘through’ a place must be balanced with the desire to go ‘to’ a place.

Roads are efficient connections between two places. Streets are a network within a place to allow people to get around. People generally don’t enjoy going ‘to’ places with high speed, high volume automobile traffic, so roads shouldn’t go ‘through’ these places. Streets in our places should be designed, scaled and prioritized for the individual – for people.

Chuck Marohn from Strong Towns explains more about the important difference between a road and a street in his TED talk above.