Improve availability, access and safety of bike and pedestrian infrastructure in the most underserved communities.

According to the NYC DOT, from 2007-2008 New York City experienced a 35% increase in the use of bicycles as a form of transportation.  There has also been a surge in the expansion of bicycle infrastructure and safety.  While this expansion is important it has two serious flaws.  The first is simple –  and a purely fiscal concern: insufficient resources have been dedicated to making our streets safe and accessible for people to walk and bike in.  Secondly, funding has not only been minimal, but it also has benefited certain communities at the expense of others, namely poor communities of color, the elderly, and those with disabilities.

On the federal level, funding for bicycle and pedestrian projects comes from a vast array of sources.  Below is a chart representing the 2008 federal funding for transportation projects.   Out of a $63 billion Department of Transportation budget $40 billion was dedicated to the Federal Highway Administration, $9.4 billion to the Federal Transit Administration, and a total of $541 million to Bicycle and Pedestrian projects.

Futhermore, walking and biking remain unsafe, in particular for environmental justice communities.  A recent report by PolicyLink reports that “the pedestrian death rate for Latino males in the Atlanta metropolitan area was six times greater than for whites.  African Americans make up 12 percent of the U.S. population but account for 20% of pedestrian deaths.”

In addition, investing in bicycle and pedestrian infrastruture promotes physical activity, which helps improve public health. For poor communities, transportation inequities are compounded by unhealthly food option and a lack of open spaces for physical activity. The health of communities can be improved by making people-powered transportation safer and more accessible.