Last night was a big night for non-motorized transportation in Traverse City. The City Commission passed a Complete Street resolution without discussion as part of a consent agenda. Resident and local advocate Gary Howe commented on his blog that, “It may not be the bold resolution or ordinance that some of us would have written, but as long the actions to follow include the planning, consideration and implementation for all users–it’s all good.”
He went on to encourage continued participation in the regional Complete Streets Coalition that has been formed to discuss opportunities to implement Complete Streets within the Grand Vision in Northwest Michigan.
Shortly after the City Commission adopted the Complete Streets resolution, they also adopted an amendment to the City Code of Ordinances, Uniform Traffic Code Section 410.03, that requires all vehicles (including bicycles) to stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks. State law currently only requires drivers to yield to pedestrians, not necessarily stop for them when they are attempting to enter the street from the curb. By passing this ordinance, Traverse City joins Ann Arbor in passing policy meant to help people safely cross a street. Ann Arbor has had their ordinance for about a year, but only recently began ticketing people for not following the new local law.
The Michigan Complete Streets Coalition congratulates the Traverse City Commission and local advocates for their ongoing efforts to improve safety for all roadway users.