Environmental Groups Laud Passage of Senator Fuschillo’s Environmental “Super Bill”

Charles J. Fuschillo Jr.

July 05, 2011

Complete Streets Legislation Named One of the Most Significant Environmental Bills Passed by State Legislature

          A number of policy, environmental, transportation, and energy groups recently named Senator Fuschillo’s complete streets legislation as an environmental "super bill" for 2011. The groups lauded the legislation as one of the most significant environmental bills passed by the State Legislature this year and applauded Senator Fuschillo for championing the measure.

          "The Complete Streets bill will save lives and make it easier for New Yorkers to leave the car at home," said Kate Slevin, Executive Director of Tri-State Transportation Campaign. "Making it safe for people of all ages to walk and bike will lead to healthier communities and cleaner air. We applaud Senator Charles Fuschillo for championing the Complete Streets bill and ensuring its passage."

          Rob Moore, Executive Director of Environmental Advocates of New York noted that passage of the complete streets legislation is one of the actions which will "put New York State on the path to a cleaner, greener, and more sustainable future."

          Complete streets design principles are roadway design features that accommodate and facilitate safe travel by pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists of all ages and abilities. These features include sidewalks, paved shoulders suitable for use by bicyclists, bicycle lanes, share the road signage, crosswalks, pedestrian control signalization, bus pull outs, curb cuts, raised crosswalks, ramps and traffic calming measures designed to allow pedestrian and motor traffic to easily coexist. Senator Fuschillo’s legislation would require all state, county, and local transportation agencies to consider complete streets design principles on all projects which receive both federal and state funding.

          A Federal Highway Administration safety review found that streets designed with these features improve safety for all users, enabling pedestrians to cross busy roads in two stages, improving bicycle safety and reducing left-turning motorist crashes to zero.

          According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over 300 pedestrians were killed on New York’s roadways in 2009, more than 45 other states. 26 percent of all traffic fatalities in New York State in 2009 involved pedestrians, more than double the national average. Between 2000 and 2009, over 3,200 pedestrians were killed in New York State, according to Transportation for America, a coalition of organizations seeking to improve roadway safety.

          Senator Fuschillo’s Complete Streets legislation will be sent to Governor Cuomo for consideration.