As you may know, the Sierra Club has been working on implementing Complete Streets – roads that are designed to be safe and accessible by everyone, regardless of age or ability. Why? Because more people walking, bicycling, and taking the bus or train means less polluting cars on the road, cleaner air and less dirty oil consumed.
When the 3rd Annual Safe Routes to School Conference came to town last week, it was a very important opportunity to talk and learn more about other reasons to implement Complete Streets: getting our kids safely to school, the park and the library without having to load them in the car and drive them there. Active transportation helps keep our kids (and us!) healthy and less stressed. Walking and bicycling trims our waistline and fattens our wallets with fewer trips to the gas station.
We learned about simple solutions like extending dead-end sidewalks like this one in Loring Park. Who wants to walk on a muddy “cow path?” One engineer joked that user-created path like this saves cities thousands of dollars in planning: Just put in sidewalks and trails where folks need to walk.
On Saturday, September 17, you can see for yourself what other Complete Streets opportunities and successes can be found in Minneapolis; the #1 bicycling city in America. Join us on our 16th annual bicycle “conference on wheels!” This year’s Tour de Minneapolis will include great food, 20 or so miles of easy riding and rest stops with expert guest speakers discussing road diets, bike boulevards, sharrows and other wonky bike-friendly road treatments. It’s more fun than it sounds – I promise!
See you on the Tour!