College of Architecture and Environmental Design
City and Regional Planning Department
BS in City and Regional Planning
Transportation is a key element to everyday life, providing an efficient connection and movement of goods and people. While there are different modes of transportation, motor vehicles are still the preferred and highly used option, providing people the luxury of traveling to farther distances on their own time and in their own comfort. However, in a country where cities are increasingly becoming cores of pedestrian traffic, motor vehicles make these places less walkable, as well as produce pollution through their use of gasoline. At a time when we must continue to consider the safety and environmental aspects of transportation, we need to be thinking of alternative modes of transportation. A diverse set of transportation modes is beneficial in several ways, including providing people a variety of options to choose from as well as reducing the stress of congestion from motor vehicle traffic. Cities must promote alternative modes of transportation in order to improve the safety, health, and welfare of its residents, workers, and visitors. Designing streets is also a part of making the built environment aesthetically pleasing. Complete streets, a relatively newer term that is gaining traction in the United States, is a solution that combines sustainable and safe thinking with a visually enjoyable built environment.
Complete Streets help create communities for various types of users, including children, the disabled, and the elderly. (What are Complete Streets?, n.d.) Complete Streets improve safety and public health while promoting active and efficient travel. My research is intended to review, analyze, and understand design guidelines and polices of complete streets in order to improve the safety and the aesthetic of them, as well as to promote the use of alternative transportation modes, thus creating a more sustainable environment. The purpose of this research is not to discourage the use of motor vehicles, but rather integrate them with pedestrians, bikes, and public transit through the development of complete streets. With these newer and improved complete streets, environments can become more sustainable and roads safer for every vehicle and pedestrian.