Why should your community become more bicycle and pedestrian friendly?

Bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities are happier, healthier, and more livable places. Creating a more welcoming environment for bicycling and walking improves resident’s quality of life and your municipality’s bottom line. Encouraging biking and walking reduces a community’s automobile dependence. This allows residents to become more active, reduces air pollution, and creates an equitable transportation network open to all—regardless of age, physical ability, or income. Bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities benefit economically; encouraging local spending, spurring tourism, creating jobs, and attracting new homebuyers.

Biking and walking are healthy

Thirty minutes of physical activity a day has proven effective in preventing many serious health conditions. Providing a bicycle and pedestrian friendly environment encourages your residents to engage in routine physical activity.

Biking and walking are green

Automobile emissions are a leading cause of air pollution. Encouraging people to replace some of their shorter car based trips with walking and biking will reduce harmful emissions and improve your community’s air quality. Bicycling burns calories, not oil.

Biking and walking are equitable

Bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities provide more travel options for people of all ages, including children and the elderly. Biking and walking are affordable for everyone, regardless of income – expanding your entire community’s access to jobs and services.

Biking and walking mean business

A Rutgers University study found that biking and walking contributed $497 million to New Jersey’s economy in 2011. This was roughly proportionate to the projected economic impact for hosting the Super Bowl in 2014.

  • Identify funding sources and assist with preparation of grant applications for pedestrian and bicycle friendly infastructure
  • Assist with developing policies supportive of biking ans walking, such as Complete Streets (20 point Sustainable Jersey action item)
  • Utilize GIS and GPS technology to inventory and map existing and proposed bikeways
  • Identify future bikeway facilities to improve local and regional bikeway connectivity
  • Provide assistance with bicycle and pedestrian Master Plans (10 point Sustainable Jersey action item) and studies
  • Coordinate with local, county, regional, and state planning efforts
  • Conduct bicycle safety and walkability audits (5 point Sustainable Jersey action item)
  • Utilize geographic data collection, analysis and mapping expertise to assist local governments in making informed decisions with respect to biking and walking including:
  • Bicycle and pedestrian crash analysis
  • Bikeway network needs assessments
  • Pedestrian network needs assessments

Assist communities to connect with residents and solicit valuable input by conducting a wide range of pubic outreach efforts including:

  • Public meetings and visioning sessions
  • Surveys
  • Interactive websites
  • Web-based maps that allow residents and visitors to identify and share the best places to walk and bike
  • Social media and print based marketing campaignsCreate electronic and print bikeway maps utilizing GIS and GPS mapping technology
    Work with schools to develop youth bicycle and pedestrian safety education programs and activities through NJDOT’s Safe Routes to School Program

 

How does your community become bicycle and pedestrian friendly?

Providing sidewalks and bike lanes is an important part of making your community bicycle and pedestrian friendly, but it is not the only tool at your disposal. Successful bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities take a comprehensive approach that addresses:

  • Policy
  • Programing
  • Engineering
These comprehensive measures are developed through a two-step process that uses sound planning analysis to inform effective implementation strategies. Each stage of this process requires the coordination of multiple players and meaningful public participation.

THE TWO-STEP PROCESS

How Cross County Connection Can Help

Cross County Connection offers a range of services that will guide you through the two-step process and put your community on path to becoming a bicycle and pedestrian friendly, starting today!

Planning ensures that your community’s needs will be tied to effective implementation strategies. Sound planning is essential to efficiently and effectively implementing the engineering, policy, and programming initiatives vital to building a bicycle and pedestrian friendly community. Haphazard planning wastes valuable resources, resulting in underutilized facilities and unintended safety concerns. Cross County Connection can help your community avoid these unintended consequences. We provide a wide range of programs and services will help your community take the initial steps towards creating a safe and attractive biking and walking environment. Bicycle and Pedestrian Audits (5 point Sustainable Jersey Action Item) An audit is an effective first step in improving your community’s biking and walking environment. The audit will give your community a clear picture of where it is at, and what needs to be done to head in the right direction. Mapping and Data Analysis Cross County Connection’s data collection, analysis, and GIS mapping expertise will highlight areas of concern and assist your community in making informed decisions regarding potential improvements. Commonly provided services are:

  • Bicycle and pedestrian crash analysis
  • Demographic analysis
  • Identification of walking and biking generators
  • Infrastructure project prioritization modeling

Bicycle and Pedestrian Supportive Policies Adopting supportive policies provides a predictable and transparent process for implementing infrastructure improvements and safety programs. Cross County Connection can assist your community with the development of these bicycle and pedestrian supportive policies, including Complete Streets. Education and Encouragement Programs Effective programming will encourage your community to embrace biking and walking as an everyday form of transportation and ensure that residents do so safely. These programs will:

  • Educate motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians on traffic laws and safe practices.
  • Bring awareness to the multitude of health and other quality of life benefits biking and walking provide.
  • Provide opportunities to bring your community together and have fun.

Cross County Connection can advise you on the programs and activities that best fit your community’s needs, including the popular Safe Routes to School and Sustainable Jersey programs. Bikeway Inventories Cross County Connection conducts periodic bicycle facility inventories for South Jersey’s seven counties: Atlantic; Burlington; Camden; Cape May; Cumberland; Gloucester; and Salem. These inventories document existing and proposed bikeways at a county-wide level. Inventories provide local governments with timely and accurate information on the region’s existing bikeway network, and assist in prioritizing future investment in bicycle infrastructure. Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plans (10 point Sustainable Jersey action item) Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plans are the most effective means to develop and bicycle and pedestrian friendly community. The master plan is a comprehensive document that ties all the engineering, programming and policy elements together into a cohesive form that will guide your community for next five, ten, or more years. Effective master plans address the 5 Es that are essential to making a biking and walking a viable transportation option in your community – Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation. Cross County Connection has a depth of technical experience in all elements of bicycle and pedestrian master planning and can assist your community with the preparation of Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plans in one of two ways:

  1. Preparation of a Bicycle and/or Pedestrian Master Plan (fee for service).
  2. Sitting on Plan Steering Committees – Advising your consultants and ensuring the needs of your community are effectively addressed.
Successful implementation strategies ensure that results effectively address the community needs determined at the planning stage. Saying you are going to do something is one thing, but actually doing it is another. Cross County Connection can guide your community through the implementation process – where a plan becomes tangible results. We can help you get projects funded and provide assistance with implementing programs, policies, and infrastructure. Grant applications Cross County Connection will identify potential grant opportunities and assist your community with the preparation of grant applications to fund infrastructure and programs. Infrastructure Design Guidance By staying up to date on best practices throughout the nation, Cross County Connection is able to provide guidance and resources that ensures you will select the appropriate infrastructure improvements to address your community’s specific mobility and safety needs. Evaluation and performance measures Cross County Connection can help you community develop performance measures that effectively evaluate the performance of your community’s biking and walking environment. These measures can be crafted to address your community’s specific concerns and evaluate metrics such as accessibility, safety, and equity. Safe Routes to School Cross County Connection administers New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program. This program seeks to enable and encourage children in grade K-8, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school. Cross County Connection can assist you throughout every stage of the SRTS process. For more information visit our SRTS webpage. Recognition Programs Communities that make a commitment to become bicycle and pedestrian friendly deserved to be recognized. Cross County Connection can assist you with applications to various recognition programs including: Sustainable Jersey; SRTS; Bicycle Friendly Community; and Walk Friendly Communities. Recognition creates a sense of civic pride and can also lead to more funding opportunities
Public involvement should inform both the planning and implementation processes to the greatest extent possible. The public are the ones that will be walking and biking, so they should be the ones that largely determine what a bicycle and pedestrian friendly community looks like. Public involvement also creates a sense of partnership with your community’s residents, avoiding a perception that decisions are being forced upon them. Cross County Connection has extensive experience in assisting communities to connect with residents and solicit valuable input by conducting a wide range of public outreach efforts including: Public meetings and visioning sessions Allow us to lead your public meetings and work with the public to craft a vision for biking and walking in your community. Surveys Cross County Connection has experience in utilizing web-based and in-person surveys that assess your community’s concerns and gauge attitudes towards a range of solutions. Interactive websites Websites are an effective way to reach the broadest range of community members. Cross County Connection has developed websites for bicycle and pedestrian master plans and studies that include web-based maps that allow residents and visitors to share the best places to walk and bike and identify areas of concern. Social media and print based marketing campaigns Get the word out about what you are doing to make your community bicycle and pedestrian friendly. This could include development of a community bike map. These maps are an effective way to provide community residents and visitors with an easy to follow map to plan their journey.
Coordination between the relevant parties throughout every stage of the planning and implementation process is crucial. Identifying potentially affected parties early in the process is important. Communication between these parties is important to avoid last minute issues that could derail the process completely. Cross County Connection has a range of contacts in the world of bicycle and pedestrian planning. We are experienced in identifying who needs to be involved and facilitating communication between them. Local, County, Regional and State Agencies Identify potential partnerships and use our contacts to ensure the right people, at every level of the decision making process, are involved in the process. Internal Coordination Facilitate communication between government officials, municipal and county departments, and other interested stakeholders in order to work through issues as they arise. Green Teams Cross County Connection can assist your community’s Green Teams with implementing sustainable jersey action items.