Special to 1808Delaware

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission is currently seeking public comment and review of the draft version of its 2021 update to the Regional Complete Streets Policy.

“Complete streets” are roadways designed, implemented, operated, and maintained in an equitable and context-sensitive manner so that people of all ages, incomes, and abilities can use them safely. These streets consider the needs of those who are: walking, bicycling, using shared mobility devices and assistive devices, using transit and riding school buses, driving, and operating commercial and emergency vehicles.

“As a region, we strive to support the development of a safe and sustainable transportation system that ensures accessibility for everyone using it,” MORPC Assistant Director of Planning & Sustainability Stephen Patchan said. “Through the Complete Streets Policy – which is guided by MORPC members – local communities incorporate design elements that accommodate all roadway users in any MORPC federally funded projects.”

MORPC’s current Complete Streets Policy was adopted in 2010 – one of the first of such policies adopted at the regional scale in the nation. Since then, several local jurisdictions in Central Ohio have adopted their own complete streets policies, resolutions, or ordinances.

Once the updated policy is adopted, it will apply to all projects seeking federal funding for transportation-related projects from MORPC, beginning with the summer 2022 round of funding. The grant is awarded to communities within MORPC’s federally designated metropolitan transportation planning area that includes: Delaware County; Franklin County; Bloom and Violet townships in Fairfield County; New Albany, Pataskala, and Etna Township in Licking County; and Jerome Township in Union County.

“The updated Complete Streets Policy aligns with future-focused regional planning efforts in Central Ohio communities and provides for additional design flexibility so that projects can incorporate inclusive street design,” MORPC Director of Transportation & Infrastructure Development Thea Ewing said. “By updating to these modern standards, regional communities will continue to build public transportation infrastructure projects in a manner that supports safety, multimodal mobility and resiliency at a time of historical population growth.”

Members of the public are encouraged to comment on the proposed policy, which can be viewed on the Complete Streets webpage at morpc.org. Comments can be submitted by email to lcardoni@morpc.org or in writing to MORPC, 111 Liberty Street, Suite 100, Columbus, Ohio 43215, Attn: Lauren Cardoni, by 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 22, 2021.

The updated Complete Streets Policy will be considered for adoption at MORPC’s Community Advisory Committee, Transportation Advisory Committee, and Transportation Policy Committee meetings in November.

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