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Complete Streets now official policy in Orlando

The new rule took effect in March and means Orlando must consider all kinds of transportation — think bikes and walking, not just cars — when city projects are designed and built.

That’s a big deal and it puts Orlando in the company of cities that are already following similar development plans, such as Austin, Denver, Salt Lake City and San Antonio.

“Adopting policies like this that promote a multi-modal environment ensures Orlando remains competitive in attracting new business, retaining a diverse workforce and providing safe, walkable and healthy communities,” Orlando spokeswoman Cassandra Lafser wrote in an email to Bike/Walk Central Florida.

Orlando first tried the complete streets concept back in 2001, when it dropped one of four lanes on Edgewater Drive in College Park, just north of downtown. The city also added bike lanes, a center turn lane and wider on-street parking.

The results were startling: Collisions dropped 40% and the crash rate was nearly cut in half. What’s more, cycling increased by 30% and the number of people on foot went up by 23%.

That outcome was recently highlighted as a national model for Complete Streets by Smart Growth America.

And don’t forget all this happened in Orlando, which has been ranked as the deadliest place to walk in the country by Smart Growth America in its 2011 and 2014 Dangerous by Design reports.

 Check out this link on the City of Orlando’s website to learn more.

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