Bike Fed staff attended the City of Milwaukee’s release of the Draft Pedestrian Plan at Mitchell Street Library yesterday. Read the full version here. The Open House was very well attended and lots of discussions and questions were had. Lots of City and Toole Design group staff were on hand to talk in person with community advocates and residents.
What is the Pedestrian Plan?
The City of Milwaukee’s Department of Public Works is creating the first citywide Pedestrian Plan. The plan will recommend programs, policies, and tools for making streets more safe, comfortable, and accessible for people walking , no matter their age or ability.
The comment period is open and we encourage you to review the plan and submit comments. More info is here
Next steps will be for The DPW and Toole Design group to review comments and revise the plan based on that feedback. A final plan will then be released and a push for Common Council adoption will then occur.
A few comments heard at the meeting (and pardon my not getting exact quotes - italicized writing is paraphrased comments of public during Q & A session)
High speeds of motor vehicles are proven to be more dangerous for pedestrians [and noted so in the plan]. Is there any discussion to reduce citywide speed limits?
Upon review of the plan there is no suggestion to reduce speed limits but it does acknowledge the dangers increased speed creates. Read some more on how Boston is working to increase safety for its residents by reducing speed limits citywide.
Snow often blocks sidewalks, bus stops, ramps etc
Aspects of the plan do discuss the need for equal access for all to utilize sidewalk and intersection networks. We all have heard the talk this winter about how bad snow removal has been, or perceived to be at the very least. This Draft Plan does not contain a snow removal plan but does acknowledge that the network should be properly maintained for all residents year round.
Blind people have a very hard time in our city. Too many lights do not have audible signals and curb ramps that extend out one direction, instead of two, are difficult to safely navigate your direction across the intersection.
The Plan does address making sure that all city facilities are ADA compliant.
I think the biggest challenge we will face in implementing the goals of this plan is the need for increased funding and political will. The Bike Fed will continue to advocate for such on your behalf. but we need your help!
So review the plan, offer comments, and keep up to date with is on any revisions. THEN ACT! Call or write your alderperson in support of the plan. Let’s get it passed and start working on that funding part!
If you feel that the Bike Fed is an important part of making our State a great place to walk bike or walk lease consider joining or renewing your membership today!