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Council approves 'Complete Streets' proposal

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An ordinance that would require new and rebuilt streets in Indianapolis to be designed and constructed with multiple users in mind has been passed by the City-County Council.

Councilors on Monday unanimously approved the measure known as "Complete Streets," which calls for planners designing roads to look beyond the needs of motorists—to also consider pedestrians, bicyclists and public transportation users.

The ordinance was initiated in June by City-County Council President Maggie Lewis, a Democrat, and co-sponsored by Democrat John Barth.

“As Indianapolis continues to grow, it is essential we plan for the safe and mixed use of our streets and sidewalks,” Lewis said in a prepared statement.

Lewis introduced the ordinance that had been championed by advocates for several years. Health by Design—a coalition working to ensure that neighborhoods, public spaces and transportation infrastructure promote physical activity and healthy living—coordinated the effort.

Design elements might include sidewalks, bike lanes, special bus lanes, safe-crossing areas, median islands and accessible pedestrian signals.

The ordinance needs final approval from Mayor Greg Ballard.

 

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  • Good idea
    I live less than 1/4 mile from the nearest grocery store - I can almost see it from my front yard. But I wouldn't walk there without a death wish. The one time I tried to bike there, I got yelled at and nearly run off the road. So I drive, even when I just want to pick up a couple of items. Anyone notice that we're now a top 10 state for the % of residents who are obese? It doesn't help us get fitter (and reduce health care costs) when we're forced by bad planning into cars for all of our trips.
  • Russ.....
    I live near DT, because I can't afford the burbs either emotionally or economically. I also don't drive. Projects like the CT allow me to move through town, get to work and stores. Without these innovative projects, People without the option to drive would be forced into a hostile street occupied by single mode idealists like yourself. Before you criticize improvements to a city, please understand the workings of a multimodal system. The less people that rely on the car to get them around, the less traffic for those that do.
  • short sighted
    Hey russ, you ever think of taking something other than a bus to get around? Might change your perspectives when you think that there will simply be more congestion
  • Complete Streets?
    Look at Georgia Street as the city's example of a "complete street"... less than a year old and falling apart already. Nothing wrong with improving infrastructure, but to add medians, bike lanes, bus lanes, wider sidewalks, etc. means you need wider streets. Downtown can't support wider streets, so you eventually need to cut into existing traffic lanes to do that (see the Cultural Trail), which is going to make downtown traffic more congested during rush hours and special events and people are going to avoid it. Nobody is going to ride a bike downtown in the middle of winter. Maybe the city should think about fixing and the existing sidewalks and stabilizing existing infrastructure before taking on these kinds of pie in the sky projects, especially when uppity so-called "urban dwellers" like to badmouth others for where they choose or can afford to live.
    • Thank you!
      I want to thank you for leaving Marion County. We don't need folks like you that have no vision and don't want to improve the quality of our city. Indianapolis being an urban core needs streets that work for more than commuters from the suburbs. Having sidewalks, safe crossings, bike and transit lanes improve the quality of life for urban dwellers. We don't just need roads that take us to the suburbs, live in your strip mall paradise while we enjoy our beautiful city!
    • Just another reason to leave Marion county
      Moved out of Marion county over 10 years ago to escape the ridiculous property taxes. Now Indy is blessed with 'visionaries' that are more concerned with amenities for 'Complete Streets' than I am willing to contribute via tax dollars. Good job Democrats, say goodbye to my tax dollars forever! The more you spend, the less we visit so it hurts the merchants, too.
      • Great!
        This is good news - Indianapolis is way too tough to walk around in many places.
      • LMAO
        What a laugth

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      1. I never thought I'd see the day when a Republican Mayor would lead the charge in attempting to raise every tax we have to pay. Now it's income taxes and property taxes that Ballard wants to increase. And to pay for a pre-K program? Many studies have shown that pre-K offer no long-term educational benefits whatsoever. And Ballard is pitching it as a way of fighting crime? Who is he kidding? It's about government provided day care. It's a shame that we elected a Republican who has turned out to be a huge big spending, big taxing, big borrowing liberal Democrat.

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