Tomorrow, Leah Shahum, one of the leaders of the advocacy organization Vision Zero Network is coming to Long Beach to spread the gospel of safe streets.
Shahum, who was the executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, will be doing a day of activities on September 18th to push Long Beach to create the policies, programs and infrastructure that will reduce traffic deaths in the city to zero.
Vision Zero is a multi-national road traffic safety project which aims to achieve a highway system with no fatalities or serious injuries in road traffic. It started in Sweden and was approved by their parliament in October 1997. Sweden has cut their traffic fatalities dramatically even as the number of vehicle miles traveled has increased.
Some ways that cities can create Vision Zero policies are by designing streets for all modes, increasing funding for bicycle and transit projects, focus law-enforcement at high-risk activities and high-danger corridors and, perhaps most importantly, finding ways to slow-down car traffic.
A handful of cities throughout the U.S. have embraced Vision Zero including New York, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco.
Long Beach could be next.
We don’t have a full schedule for Shahum, but Pedal Love recently published a podcast with Charlie Gandy and Shahun to whet your appetite. The interview is available at the top of the post. But here’s a taste:
Gandy: We’re going to be using some of the same tactics we’ve used before, to deal with traffic safety, but we’re looking at it from a whole different outcome perspective. Is that right?
Shahun: That’s right. Part of it is that this isn’t a whole new set of problems and solutions, but about how we’re addressing them…It helps kind of break up these silos that we’ve traditionally been in between people that are walking, and biking and driving. It says we care about EVERYONE’s safety. We’re all doing a little bit of everything.
As soon as we hear more about Shahum’s schedule, we’ll make sure to post it.
[All Photos courtesy Lisa Beth Anderson unless otherwise noted]
[Graphics provided by City Fabrick]