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This latest version of Councilman Dolan’s so-called “Complete Streets” bill, Substitute Bill #2 for Bill No. 238, is definitely less objectionable than his SB #1, which came perilously close to county council approval two months ago. However, it still retains the Complete Streets Peer Advisory Committee which gives Trailnet, the bill’s primary advocate, as well as Great Rivers Greenway, self-serving and unacceptable influence. And it still includes references to “appropriate accommodation for bicyclists,” which can be interpreted to mean bike lanes.

If this is intended as a reasonable compromise those issues should be addressed by deleting the Peer Advisory Committee, which is not even present in the Complete Streets Coalition’s own model ordinance. It should also omit any reference which can be interpreted as including bike lanes, which are intrinsically dangerous, and prejudice the rights of competent legal on-road cyclists.

Substitute Bill No. 2 for
BILL NO. 238 , 2013

ORDINANCE NO. , 2013
Introduced by Councilmember Dolan

AN ORDINANCE
AMENDING CHAPTER 1105, TITLE XI SLCRO 1974 AS AMENDED, “DEPARTMENT OF HIGHWAYS AND TRAFFIC,” BY ENACTING AND ADDING THERETO ONE NEW SECTION ESTABLISHING THE COMPLETE STREETS POLICY.

BE IT ORDAINED BY THE COUNTY COUNCIL OF ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MISSOURI, AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 1. Chapter 1105, Title XI SLCRO 1974 as amended, “Department of Highways and Traffic,” is amended by enacting and adding thereto one new section as follows:

1105.250 Complete Streets. 1. This ordinance sets forth the guiding principles and practices that shall be considered in St. Louis County (“County”) transportation projects. It is the vision of the County to continue to develop and expand upon a safe, reliable, efficient, integrated, accessible and connected multimodal transportation system that shall promote access, mobility and health for all users; to ensure that the safety, convenience and comfort of all users of the transportation system are genuinely considered, including pedestrians, bicyclists, users of mass transit, people of all ages and abilities, motorists, emergency responders, freight providers and adjacent land users; and to continue to encourage safe walking, bicycling, transit and vehicle use for all users, regardless of age or ability, in efforts to create an interconnected network of complete streets, linking communities together. County believes inclusion of complete streets will help promote healthy, livable communities and further support a variety of mobility goals expressed in the St. Louis County Strategic Plan.

2. As used in this section:
i. “complete street” means a transportation corridor for all users: pedestrians, bicyclists, transit users, and motorists. Complete streets are designed and operated to enable safe accessible travel for all users with a goal towards creating a network of complete streets. Transportation improvements, facilities and amenities that may contribute to complete streets and that are considered as elements of a complete street are: Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant pedestrian access routes, street and sidewalk lighting, pedestrian and bicycle facilities; access management; ADA compliant transit stops and stations; context sensitive landscaping, utility relocations and street amenities allowing for efficient levels of service.
ii. “Pedestrian” means:
(a) A person on foot; or
(b) A person using any means of conveyance propelled by human power other than a bicycle; or
(c) A person using an electrical personal assistive mobility device; or
(d) A person operating a self-propelled wheelchair, motorized tricycle, or motorized quadricycle, and by reason of physical disability, is otherwise restricted in movement or unable to move about on foot.

3. The Department of Highways and Traffic and Public Works (“Department”) will, where practicable, economically feasible and maintainable, routinely incorporate one or more complete street elements into County transportation projects to create a safer, more accessible street for all users. These elements provide appropriate accommodation for bicyclists, pedestrians, transit users, motorists, and persons of all abilities, regardless of age, while promoting safe operation for all users, in a coordinated manner consistent with, context sensitive to and supportive of, the surrounding community.

4. The Director of Highways and Traffic and Public Works (“Director”) shall consider the incorporation of federally recognized best practice complete street elements and allow design flexibility to balance user needs, where appropriate, in the design and construction of County transportation projects, improvements and facilities. Other factors to be considered shall include, but not be limited to: cost of improvements; budget for the project; space and area requirements and limitations; federal, state and local legal requirements and limitations; property rights and acquisition; foreseeable future land use; and on-going maintenance and operational costs. This policy further requires consideration of complete street elements by the Director of Planning and the Planning Commission through the planning, development review and approval process or in other appropriate circumstances.

5. County will incorporate complete streets principles into public strategic plans, standards plans, manuals, rules, regulations and programs as appropriate.

6. County shall foster partnerships with the State of Missouri, local municipalities, neighboring
communities, Metro, business districts, chambers of commerce, Great Rivers Greenway and other agencies, in consideration of functional facilities and accommodations in furtherance of the County’s complete streets policy and the continuation of such facilities and accommodations within other County communities. Elements that require maintenance by other entities will be handled via separate agreement between the interested parties.

7. County recognizes that complete streets may be achieved through single elements incorporated into a particular project or incrementally through a series of smaller improvements over time. County intends to investigate and draw upon various possible funding sources, including partnering with other communities and agencies, to plan and implement this policy in order to make complete street elements more economically feasible.

8. During the planning phase of County transportation projects, the Director will task staff to analyze ways to incorporate one or more complete street elements into the County transportation project and document study results. The study and analysis will include cost estimates, whether the elements can be incorporated in a safe manner, the degree that such improvements or facilities may be used, the benefit of such improvements or facilities to other public transportation improvements, whether additional property is required, physical or area requirements or limitations, long-term maintenance considerations and any other factors deemed by the Director to be relevant. Study details will be commensurate with project type and size and in accordance with implementation procedures. Emergency maintenance and Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) projects will be excluded from study. Routine maintenance projects may be excluded from these requirements by the Director of Highways on a case-by-case basis. Such exclusions will be documented in the planning process.

The Director will brief the St. Louis County Board of Highways and Traffic (“Board”) regarding details of the complete streets analyses. The brief will also be distributed in writing to the Interdepartmental Advisory Team established pursuant to subsection 9 of this section and made available on the County website.

9. The Director will form an Interdepartmental Advisory Team to discuss complete streets goals in context of all County policies, plans and projects and in accordance with the County’s Strategic Plan. The Interdepartmental Advisory Team will consist of Directors or their designees from the Department of Highways and Traffic/Public Works, and the Departments of Planning, Health, Parks and Recreation and any other departments deemed appropriate by the Director. The Interdepartmental Advisory Team shall, within six months of ordinance adoption, initiate the following:

(a) Meet quarterly to discuss implementation and barriers to inclusion of complete streets elements into recent and ongoing projects;

(b) Develop an action plan to more fully integrate complete streets principles into appropriate policy documents, plans, project selection processes, design manuals and implementation (construction and maintenance) procedures;

(c) Propose revisions to the Zoning and Subdivision Ordinances and other applicable regulations to integrate, accommodate and balance the needs of all users of the transportation network;

(d) Convene a Complete Streets Peer Advisory Committee;
(e) On a semi-annual basis, prepare a summary briefing regarding consideration of and progress towards complete streets implementation including quantifying metrics and performance measures and present this briefing to the Board of Highways and Traffic and the County Council.

10. A Complete Streets Peer Advisory Committee shall be convened by the Interdepartmental Advisory Team to provide input and support for continuous improvement and coordination of complete streets projects throughout St. Louis County. The Peer Advisory Committee shall include, but not be limited to, representation from MoDOT, Metro, Great Rivers Greenway, St. Louis County Municipal League, organizations that support the disability community such as the St. Louis County Commission on disabilities, the Home Builders Association, and organizations that support multi-modal facilities such as Trailnet. Other members may include representation from the bicycle, pedestrian, youth, elderly or disabled communities or other advocacy organizations as relevant. The Peer Advisory Committee shall:

(a) Meet on a semi-annual basis, convening within six months of the effective date of this ordinance.

(b) Review and provide comment on the Department’s semi-annual report to the Board and County Council.

(c) Provide best practices, lessons learned, case studies and other resources on complete streets that the County can use to continually improve the complete streets action plan developed by the Interdepartmental Advisory Team.

(d) Assist in the identification of appropriate and reasonable performance measures and help establish
benchmarks for performance. The Peer Advisory Committee may seek assistance from appropriate community resources to help measure and monitor performance. Results of the benchmarking and performance will be collected annually and reported to the County Council.

11. County personnel will routinely seek professional development on complete streets principles and continue to attend workshops and other educational opportunities available to planners and engineers so that everyone working on the transportation network understands the importance of the complete streets vision and how they can implement it in their everyday work. County also recognizes that public outreach, education and communication are key factors of success.

ADOPTED:
APPROVED: CHAIR, COUNTY COUNCIL
ATTEST:
ADMINISTRATIVE DIRECTOR COUNTY EXECUTIVE 8
APPROVED AS TO LEGAL FORM:
COUNTY COUNSELOR

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