Thanks to the Lehigh Acres Community Planning Panel (LACPP) for inviting BikeWalkLee to make a presentation on the value of complete streets for their community. LACPP has joined BWL as a supporter organization!
On Wednesday, Oct 10th, several members of BWL attended the regular monthly meeting of the Lehigh Community Planning Panel to discuss BikeWalkLee's mission, it's coalition approach and the benefits of collaboration. This was followed up with a power point presentation of complete streets principals in action, illustrating the potential to strengthen and improve communities.
Darla Letourneau related the origins of BikeWalkLee and its coalition of supporter organizations focused on advocacy for a multi-modal network of safe, active transportation options along completed streets in Lee County. With these 42 supporting organizations, BWL works to raise awareness about the County’s transportation system, leverage opportunities for improvement and develop pathways to overcome obstacles to improvement.
BikeWalkLee's Ann Pierce gave a power point presentation on complete streets, conveying the underlying precepts and the natural extensions of complete streets philosophy and practice. She pointed out that the streets of our cities and counties must serve everyone, whether young or old, motorist or bicyclist, walker or wheelchair user, bus rider and business owner. Too many of our streets are designed only to speed cars from one point to another. These enormously expensive, often overbuilt roads are too wide, too fast, too dangerous for alternative transport users and detrimental to local businesses.
BikeWalkLee's presentation pointed out that across the country the independent concepts of complete streets, compact communities and conservative fiscal management are converging in a call for complete communities. In complete communities land use, transportation, safety, health, and economic planning are assessed and implemented as parts of the same whole, with a recognition of the impacts, intended or otherwise, that each has upon the other.
After hearing the presentation, the Lehigh Community Planning Panel voted to become a BikeWalkLee supporter organization to further efforts “to improve the quality of life through safety, health and mobility on complete streets in Lee County." They are joining 42 other organizations that are part of BikeWalkLee's coalition. The Planning Panel suggested several other Lehigh groups that would be similarly interested. The Panel closed by thanking BikeWalkLee and stating that they now truly understood the complete streets concepts and the vast potential in their community redevelopment plans.
BikeWalkLee steering committee members are available to introduce the concepts of complete streets and complete communities throughout Lee County. If your group is interested in such a presentation, contact: email@example.com.
Report by Ann Pierce