Bill Passes Both Houses of Legislature; Enables Safe Access to Public Roads for All Users
Queens, NY, June 27, 2011 – NYS Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. (D-Queens), announced the recent passage of legislation (S.5411), which mandates state, county and local transportation facilities to consider complete street design principles into the engineering and planning process of transportation projects. The bill defines “complete street design features” as roadway design features that accommodate and facilitate safe travel by all users, including current and projected users, particularly pedestrians, bicyclists and individuals of all ages and abilities. The legislative intent of the bill is for the consideration for safe travel on road networks utilized by all users of all ages.
Addabbo cosponsored the bill because of the many local roadways and intersections needing attention in his district and for the potential safety benefits. “A complete street design policy benefits our environment through improved air quality, decreased traffic congestion and the preservation of our natural assets,” explained Addabbo. “Just possibly this bill will eventually help the traffic on Woodhaven and Cross Bay Boulevards, as well as other congested areas in our communities.” This legislation would ensure that complete streets design principles are utilized where they would be most needed, most effective, and most beneficial to improve safety for all who use our roadways.
The bill would add Section 331 to the Highway Law, and defines such complete street design features as sidewalks, paved shoulders suitable for use by bicyclists, crosswalks, bus pull-outs, and others. The bill also mandates the Department of Transportation to develop best practices within two years of passage to integrate this legislation into its procedures, in consultation with municipalities, transit operators, pedestrian and bicycling advocates, disability groups and others.
The bill passed both the Senate and Assembly on June 20 and now awaits signage by the governor, who has 10 days to deliberate on whether or not to sign this measure into law.
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