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NEW YORK CITY: SETTLEMENT IMPROVES SIDEWALK ACCESSIBILITY
-> Disability Rights Advocates reported the Southern District Court of New York issued preliminary approval of a historic class action settlement that establishes a comprehensive remedial plan for drastically improving sidewalk accessibility for all members of New York City's disability community. For years, the disability community - as well as all New Yorkers - has had to deal with deteriorated curb cuts, missing detectable warnings and excessively sloped ramps throughout the City. The core provisions of the agreement mandate a citywide survey to assess which corners require installations and upgrades and a comprehensive schedule for completing the work necessary to ensure every corner in the City becomes accessible. An outside monitor will oversee the agreement. http://bit.ly/2JqAyne

CHARGING DRIVERS BY DISTANCE DRIVEN VS. FUEL CONSUMED
-> The Chicago, IL area Metropolitan Planning Council reported while fuel-efficient vehicles are great for the planet, the subsequent decrease in fuel tax revenue diminishes Illinois' funding for transportation. Last month, MPC convened a panel of experts to talk about a future alternative funding source: mileage-based user fees (also known as road usage charges or vehicle miles traveled fees), which charge drivers by distance driven rather than fuel consumed. One panelist was from OR DOT, who manages the state's OReGO program, the country's first fully implemented mileage-based user fee program. (Oregon's Road Usage Charge: The OReGO Program Final Report: http://bit.ly/2F9DS0D) Another was from Azuga, a vehicle tracking company that manufactures the software and hardware that make mileage-based user fees programs possible. http://bit.ly/2Femac

[See Research Beat for the Equitable Approach to Paying for Roads item that provides a model that may produce a better distribution of cost burdens than the VMT model.]

SAN FRANCISCO, CA: INSPIRING NEW VISION ZERO STRATEGY
-> Vision Zero Network reported San Francisco raises the notch for Vision Zero in its updated Vision Zero strategy. (Vision Zero Action Strategy: Eliminating Traffic Deaths in San Francisco: http://bit.ly/2HA2mTM) It thinks big by promoting an ambitious transformative policy agenda that prioritizes the strategies that make the biggest difference in safety. It also advances the goal of shifting modes, or trips from driving to walking, biking, and transit as a core Vision Zero strategy. San Francisco aims to shift 80% of trips to sustainable travel choices by 2030 as a way to improve safety, healthy activity and air quality, while also lessening traffic noise. Check out Vision Zero Network's top 7 takeaways from this new strategy: http://bit.ly/2HDKzuO

MACON-BIBB COUNTY, GA INTERACTIVE MAP TO REPORT PED ISSUES
-> Macon-Bibb County, GA reported their Pedestrian Safety Review Board launched an interactive map on March 18 to ask people to identify the needs and issues related to pedestrian safety in their neighborhoods. (Vision Zero Action Plan Interactive Map: http://bit.ly/2TIUjLw) They are seeking information about missing sidewalk links or sidewalks in disrepair; deficient or missing curb ramps; difficult or dangerous intersections; areas needing improved street lighting; difficult-to-reach bus stops; obstacles and overgrown sidewalks; and missing crosswalks. The map is part of developing a Vision Zero Action Plan and will be active until March 31, 2019. http://bit.ly/2TPgCPV

PORT WASHINGTON, WI: NEIGHBORS PETITION FOR PED LANE VS SIDEWALK
-> Ozaukee Press reported 19 homeowners living along Hales Trail in the City of Port Washington, WI asked the Board of Public Works to consider installing a pedestrian lane on the west side of their street rather than sidewalks as they wish to retain the character of their neighborhood. The pedestrian lane around Upper Lake Park should be improved and linked to the Hales Trail path, creating a loop from downtown along the bike path to Hales Trail, the park and back downtown. Property owners argue that sidewalks would be unsightly in an area designed without them while others argue they are a needed amenity for pedestrians walking to Upper Lake Park. Although the council approved sidewalks on Hales Trail last year, they have not yet been designed. http://bit.ly/2JnH0vm

WASHINGTON STATE DID VISION ZERO FIRST
-> Mobility Labs reported in 2000, Washington was the first U.S. state -- or jurisdiction of any kind -- to adopt a Vision Zero policy, which they called Target Zero. It targeted protecting people walking and bicycling as well as eliminating fatalities of people in cars. Target Zero's initial success is explained in several ways. The most important tool is using engineering to slow down cars. While traffic enforcement, including cameras, can help, the most effective means to reduce fatalities is to narrow lanes to slow down traffic and install traffic circles and bulb-outs. In Washington State, the many miles of roads without sidewalks constitute a special hazard. Physical separation, such as raised sidewalks is best remedy. For people riding bicycles, the best protection similarly comes from physically separated lanes, especially on high-speed roads. Intersections are also critical--bike boxes can be designed to let left-turning bikes get physically ahead of cars, rather than jostling with the uncertainty of who's free to turn. At busy intersections, a separate bicycle turn arrow will ensure everyone's safety. http://bit.ly/2TQWflu

ATLANTA, GA: DRIVERS IN BIKE LANES TO GET STIFFER FINES
-> Atlanta, GA's AJC reported the Atlanta City Council unanimously approved a new law this week that would give drivers who park, stop or drive in a bike lane a $100 fine, and those driving tractor-trailers a $1,000 fine. Part of the new law would include a ticket diversion program through the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and city solicitor's office. The one-time, annual program would educate drivers on existing bicycle safety and traffic laws. Once violators complete the program, their ticket would be waived. https://on-ajc.com/2TRn8Vu

[See Resources section for the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition report on its Unblock the Lane campaign.]

CHICAGO, IL: LYFT MAY SPEND $50M TO BRING BIKE SHARE TO ALL WARDS
-> StreetsBlog Chicago reported in a deal, which will require City Council approval, Lyft may become the sponsor of the Divvy network, and would spend $50 million on stations and bikes to bring the bike-share service to neighborhoods that currently lack docks. The city says it would also receive at least $77 million in sponsorship money from Lyft over nine years. The deal could be good news for making the system more equitable. There is currently a higher density of stations downtown and in more affluent neighborhoods, and many outlying communities don't have docks at all. Under the proposed amendment, Lyft would expand the system to all 50 wards by 2021, adding 10,500 bikes and 175 stations. That would bring the total to about 16,500 bikes and 800 stations. All of the new Chicago bikes would be electric pedal-assist cycles and have hybrid locking capabilities, so they can be locked at a station or to a regular bike rack. http://bit.ly/2HudnXC

PHILADELPHIA, PA: UNDERGROUND SUBWAY STATION BIKE PARKING
-> Cyclegram reported the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia worked with Temple Planning students on their report on Center City bike parking. They then met with SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) to discuss the findings of the report. SEPTA responded that they are committed to improving bike parking at many of its stations. One near-term commitment was to pilot a bike corral inside the paid area of the Walnut-Locust Broad St. Subway Station. On-street bike parking in the Broad and Walnut area is beyond capacity and the racks offer protection from the weather and monitored by video surveillance as well as requiring bike thieves to have a SEPTA key card. http://bit.ly/2FePqQb, photos

BALTIMORE, MD APARTMENT DEVELOPER TO GIVE TENANTS BIKES
-> The Baltimore Sun reported that when tenants begin signing leases for apartments in the Wheelhouse in Federal Hill this July, the landlord plans to give them a bike along with the keys. The developer of the 28-unit, five-story complex on South Charles Street, 28 Walker, hopes to discourage tenants from even owning cars and needing a place to park. The developer ordered a fleet of 92 low-maintenance Priority brand bikes "for the cost of building a parking space or two," which can exceed $25,000. http://bit.ly/2TJ1IKN

NEW YORK CITY WALKABLE VESSEL SCULPTURE W/ 154 STAIRCASES
-> Curbed New York reported that Vessel, a 150-foot-tall, shiny sculptural spiral staircase in New York's Hudson Yards neighborhood is made from 154 interconnected staircases, and is intended to be used by the public. Those wishing to climb the beehive-esque structure would need a free ticket, which can be booked up to 2 weeks in advance. (http://bit.ly/2Jq82lL) Vessel provides a nearly one-mile vertical climb. There is also an elevator to make Vessel accessible to those in wheelchairs or with other mobility challenges). http://bit.ly/2Jnu0F