Senator Sean Ryan, Assemblymember Didi Barrett Introduce ‘Complete Streets’ Legislation

Senator Ryan joins State legislators and street safety advocates at a rally in support of the Crash Victims Rights & Safety Act, May 4, 2022


Bill Would Strengthen 2011 Law Passed to Improve Mobility and Promote Sustainability in New York

ALBANY Today, May 5, 2022, New York State Senator Sean Ryan and Assemblymember Didi Barrett announced that they have introduced legislation (S.8394/A.8624) to make communities across New York State safer and more sustainable by expanding the state’s Complete Streets policy.

Established in 2011, New York’s Complete Streets policy was created to ensure that state, county, and local agencies consider the convenience and mobility of all users when developing transportation projects. The goal of the initiative was to design and rehabilitate roadways in a safe, cost-effective manner that creates an ecologically sustainable transportation system that takes into account the needs all users, including pedestrians, cyclists, public transportation riders, and motorists.

According to the state Department of Transportation (DOT), “Complete Street roadway design features include sidewalks, lane striping, bicycle lanes, paved shoulders suitable for use by bicyclists, signage, crosswalks, pedestrian control signals, bus pull-outs, curb cuts, raised crosswalks, ramps and traffic calming measures.”

Currently, only transportation projects undertaken by the state DOT or those that receive both federal and state funding are required to use Complete Streets principles. To help create more accessible roadways and an environmentally friendly transportation system, this legislation would expand the policy to include all transportation projects that receive either federal or state funding.

Senator Sean Ryan said, “Transportation in our state is much different now than it was just 10 years ago, and it will be different still 10 years from now. As a state, we need to make sure that our infrastructure planning takes into account the current realities of transportation and the changes we expect to see going forward. In communities all across New York, we see more and more people utilizing public transportation, walking, and using bicycles to get around. As we look forward to a more energy efficient future of transportation, we need to prioritize complete street design principles that consider all users of the road, as well as the surrounding communities. This bill will expand the scope of New York’s Complete Streets policy to ensure that future projects will follow the guidelines put in place in 2011 to encourage sustainable communities.”

Assemblymember Didi Barrett said, “For many important reasons, from achieving climate goals to addressing generational lifestyles, New York State must bring our roadways into the 21st century by accommodating energy efficient modes of transportation like bicycles, scooters, walking, and mass transit. Complete Streets principles ensure that we prioritize safe ways to accommodate all these modes of transportation, even as we continue to fill potholes and patch asphalt. Ours is a diverse state, with rural, suburban, and urban communities, and this legislation will help us plan for a greener future for everyone.”