Vision Zero Boston and Pedestrian Fatalities Press Conference, 2/11/16

Vision Zero Boston and Pedestrian Fatalities Press Conference, 2/11/16

Notes from WalkBoston Executive Director Wendy Landman’s remarks, City of Boston’s Press Conference 2/11/16, on Vision Zero Boston and Pedestrian Fatalities

Video of remarks on YouTube

The four people in Boston, and seven people in other Massachusetts communities who lost their lives in January, were doing the most natural, ordinary and necessary of things – walking in their own communities. We need to make such tragedies rare, not ordinary.

The Vision Zero approach to ending deaths from traffic crashes is based on making streets safer for everyone with a special focus on slowing down traffic speeds and improving street crossings.

WalkBoston is glad to be included in this press conference while at the same time working hard to make sure that we will not have to do this in years to come

Making Boston a safe place to walk is key to the City’s equitable access to opportunity, to long-term economic vitality, to fighting climate change and creating a resilient city, and to making Boston a great place to live, work and play.

We are pleased to be working with the City of Boston and state agencies on this very important issue.

I also want to thank and recognize our fellow advocates in the Vision Zero Coalition – we are all working together on this critical effort.

We urge the City to set aside the dollars needed to make both long and short term improvements.

Engaging with the advocacy community, the grassroots neighborhood organizations and Boston’s residents, workers and visitors is key to success in reducing pedestrian fatalities and injuries

The City’s planned 2016 Vision Zero actions to improve safety along Mass Ave and in Codman Square and to implement neighborhood slow zones in the Talbot-Norfolk Triangle and Stony Brook are great first steps – we look forward to seeing their implementation and working with the City to identify the subsequent actions.

WalkBoston has been a core member of the City’s Task Force, pushing hard to make sure that we know where crashes are happening and then figuring out how to make both immediate and longer term improvements to reduce the chances for future crashes in those places.

We are also excited to be starting a Safe Routes for Seniors project with the Elderly Commission under the City’s Age Friendly Boston initiative. Working with many city departments we will identify senior-friendly walking improvements in 3 target neighborhoods to be implemented over the next several years and also outlining policies and protocols that the City will follow to ensure that senior’s walking needs are well addressed.

The City’s launch of a new online tool to collect information to take pro-active steps to improve safety at locations where the public has noted dangerous conditions is an important step toward achieving Vision Zero – one that helps move beyond reaction and toward solutions.

Finally, we pledge to continue our advocacy for walking safety, to working with the City, and to engaging with many City residents to ensure that their voices are heard on this critical issue. Thank you.

City of Boston’s Vision Zero Task Force site: 

Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition site:

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