Virginia Beach Adopts Complete Streets Policy
The City of Virginia Beach has adopted a Complete Streets Policy, which originated from a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grant administered by Smart Growth America. The grant funded a two-day Complete Streets workshop with the various city, state and regional stakeholders and the public. This workshop provided the impetus for a city staff committee to develop the policy.
The purpose of the Complete Streets Policy is to improve the Virginia Beach transportation system by providing safe, attractive travel for all users through a system of connected transportation choices designed in harmony with adjacent land uses. This policy will ensure that all users of roadways are considered with the design and construction of new roadways.
What is a Complete Street?
The Smart Growth American National Complete Streets Coalition defines complete streets as follows:
“Complete Streets are streets for everyone. They are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities. Complete Streets make it easy to cross the street, walk to shops, and bicycle to work. They allow buses to run on time and make it safe for people to walk to and from train stations.”
Drafting a Complete Streets Policy
The Virginia Beach Comprehensive Plan, adopted by City Council in 2009, calls for the creation of a definition and applicability of a citywide “Complete Streets” policy. The City of Virginia Beach Strategic Growth Areas Department received a grant by Smart Growth America to hold a complete streets workshop. This well attended and successful workshop was held in April 2013 (see presentation).
Shortly following this workshop, the City of Virginia Beach established a staff committee to meet on a monthly basis to develop a complete streets policy. This committee began meeting in May 2013 and completed its work in October 2014. If you have any questions regarding this project please contact Mark Shea of the Strategic Growth Areas Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.