Current Action Items
Local Elected Officials Pledge
The “Pledge to Support Active Transportation,” launched by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy and our partners in the Partnership for Active Transportation, is an opportunity for local elected officials to defend the federal Transportation Alternatives Program and oppose efforts to decrease federal investment in active transportation.
Past Action Items
May 2015 - Letter to USDOT Secretary Foxx on Ped/Bike Safety
USDOT (United States Department of Transportation) Secretary Anthony Foxx has provided great leadership and focus on increasing the safety of people walking and bicycling. However, while great strides are being made through "Safer People, Safer Streets" and the Mayor’s Challenge, the expected policy component of this safety initiative had not, at that point, visibly advanced.
The Partnership circulated a sign on letter, seeking to maximize the impact of DOT’s safety policy agenda for people walking and cycling. We asked USDOT and Secretary Foxx to inventory agency policies and practices to identify reform opportunities and we specify a series of issues—like speed limits, transit access and integrating health into transportation—that could make the reform real.
A total of 59 national, state and local organizations signed on to the letter which communicated to USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx a suggested framework that would maximize the policy impacts of his pedestrian and bicycle safety policy agenda and create a lasting legacy of preventing thousands of tragic fatalities and injuries.
The Partnership delivered the final letter with signatures to Secretary Foxx's staff on Wednesday May 13, 2015. USDOT has responded in several ways:
- In August, 2015, the agency published a document addressing common misconceptions about bicycle and pedestrian funding, design, and environmental review. The document directly addresses suggestions in our letter relating to vehicle speed and agency guidance.
- In October, 2015, USDOT unveiled a new online Transportation and Health Tool to integrate health into transportation planning, a central tenant of the letter.
- On September 25, 2015, Secretary Foxx issued a letter in response and in early October, national organizations including Rails-to-Trails Conservancy met with USDOT officials where the agency discussed ways in which it is committed to improving focus on pedestrian and bicycle safety. We are optimistic that together with USDOT we can continue to shift the culture of many regional FHWA offices and state DOTs to put greater value on active transportation and the safety of those who walk or bicycle.
September 2014 - Comment letter to USDOT regarding proposed rule on Transportation Planning
Our transportation system has tremendous impacts on public health. That’s why it’s a huge missed opportunity that the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) failed to include public health considerations in their June 2014 proposed rulemaking for transportation planning. The Partnership for Active Transportation circulated a sign-on letter to encourage USDOT to require the inclusion of public health considerations in transportation planning and to improve the provisions related to walking and biking. A total of 138 national, state and local organizations signed on to the letter urging USDOT to consider public health in transportation planning.
Two letters were submitted to USDOT on Friday September 5, 2014; the first was the detailed comment letter from the Parntership for Active Transportation's Leadership Council organizations on the notice of proposed rulemaking, and the second was the shorter sign-on letter.