Comprehensive Plan Will Ensure Strong Oversight for Safer Streets in DC
EDGEWOOD – Ahead of the first transportation-focused Council Chair debate, Erin Palmer today announced her Safe Streets Infrastructure & Public Transportation Plan – a comprehensive plan to ensure every DC resident has safe streets by design, reliable public transportation, and amenities in their neighborhoods.
“As a mom, I know building safe streets and a more sustainable future is critical for our children,” said Erin, Democrat for DC Council Chairwoman. “Our current Council Chair is satisfied with a status quo where too many people are hurt and killed on our streets, too many neighborhoods are underserved by transit, and there is no vision for a brighter, more sustainable future in DC. We need new leadership that can change that.”
For years, Erin has been recognized as a citywide leader on safe streets and transportation issues and has led citywide efforts to improve sidewalks, fight for better transit, create sustainable communities, build safer streets, and end government corruption. The Plan prioritizes the lived experiences of more than one third of DC households who don’t own a car and live in historically underinvested communities, with some of the worst access to transit, fewest amenities, and highest risk of traffic violence.
“When we design and reinforce a commuter-centered city, that’s what we get, including all the pollution and traffic that comes with it,” said Erin. “We should build a city for us – the residents of DC.”
Erin’s Plan for Safe Streets Infrastructure & Public Transportation Plan focuses on three key areas:
Make installation of traffic safety infrastructure routine. Neighbors regularly fight for traffic safety infrastructure. Yet the District Department of Transportation only seems to act in response to intense public and political pressure, usually following a tragic death or injury. We must shift the framework: safe streets should be the default rather than the result of favors, tragedies, or intense advocacy. DC Council oversight must be intentionally focused on pushing proven solutions.
Deliver reliable and affordable public transportation for everyone. Metro, bus, and other transit services and networks are crucial to DC’s public transportation infrastructure. Yet, we see deteriorating service and reliability. Year after year, neighbors fight against reductions in service. We must shift the framework: more and better public transportation requires high-quality, interconnected public transportation networks. DC must lead in regional efforts for better transit.
Serve neighborhoods with resources and amenities. DC is a city of neighborhoods – each with strong identity, culture, and vibrancy. Yet, we’ve seen leadership focused on a commuter-centered, downtown-focused model for DC. This results in traffic congestion, loss of neighborhood amenities, and disconnection. We must shift the framework: when we focus on neighborhoods and neighborhood-serving amenities, we center the people who live in our neighborhoods. Pedestrian-friendly, vibrant neighborhoods should be provided for existing communities, not just brand-new, developer-created spaces.