Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Caltrans Going Multi-Modal! Report Highlights "Active Transportation" Achievements

Did you know that California is now one of the nation’s top 10 bicycle-friendly states and has one of the nation’s largest programs to encourage walking and biking? These are just two of the achievements highlighted in Caltrans’ annual Non-Motorized Transportation Facilities Report.

The report provides an overview on the state’s Active Transportation Program (ATP), the largest of its kind in the U.S. In its first call for projects in May 2014, Caltrans received 771 project applications requesting more than a billion dollars. The California Transportation Commission has adopted the first program of projects for the ATP, which includes 265 projects using $368 million in ATP funds. Of this amount, $311 million is dedicated to 220 projects that benefit disadvantaged communities.

The report also highlights program activities and completed projects, as well as other state and federal partnering programs to establish and improve bicycle and pedestrian facilities. Among the completed projects is Southern California’s first “bicycle boulevard,” which is located in Pasadena. The project improved bicycle safety and advanced the vision of commuting in Pasadena without a car.

Speaking of bikes, California jumped from 19th to 9th in the nation in the League of American Bicyclists annual report due, in large part, to notable progress in legislation, funding and policy that will make it easier to build bike lanes and mandate that drivers give cyclists three feet of space when they pass.

Also, as part of its effort to streamline construction of multi-modal local streets and roads, in April 2014, Caltrans became the third state to endorse National Association of City Transportation Officials guidelines that include innovations such as buffered bike lanes and improved pedestrian walkways.

Caltrans’ has historically been known as a highways agency, but as the report indicates, we’re shifting our focus to creating a transportation system that links communities and is safe for all travelers, including those who choose to travel by biking and walking ... like Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty, who is pictured above with Caltrans employees putting the "active" in transportation.

You can read the full report here.

Check out the League of American Bicyclists report cards here.

See the Caltrans press release about the report here.