California Issues Complete Streets Guidelines

The new guidelines are a start, but will local districts enforce them?

1 minute read

February 12, 2024, 10:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Close-up of green and white Bike Route sign with arrow in California.

Dogora Sun / Adobe Stock

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) released a set of Complete Streets guidelines in January, which promise to include pedestrians and other road users when considering safety and streetscape design.

“But strong guidance from headquarters is one thing,” writes Melanie Curry in Streetsblog California. “Translating that to the districts, and actually getting these recommendations on the ground, is another.”

To that end, Curry calls on state legislators to pass S.B. 960, a state bill introduced by Senator Scott Wiener that would force Caltrans districts to prioritize true Complete Streets projects, not just those that include minimal accommodations such as ‘bike-friendly’ gutter grates. “Caltrans districts shouldn't be able to claim credit for fulfilling only the most basic and simple of what are listed as ‘complete streets’ elements. Even the best policy on the books - even this new high-quality Design Information Bulletin - can't force them.”

Friday, February 9, 2024 in Streetsblog California

Green rapid transit bus pulled into station in dedicated lane.

Indiana Once Again Considering Ban on Dedicated Transit Lanes

The proposed legislation would impact the construction of planned IndyGo Blue Line, the third phase of the city’s bus rapid transit system.

February 25, 2024 - Fox 59

Aerial view of New York City architecture with augmented reality visualization, blue digital holograms over buildings and skyscrapers

4 Ways to Use AI in Urban Planning and City Design

With the ability to predict trends, engage citizens, enhance resource allocation, and guide decision-making, artificial intelligence has the potential to serve as planners’ very own multi-tool.

February 20, 2024 - ArchDaily

View from shore of Sepulveda Basin water catchment basin with marsh plants along shore.

LA’s ‘Spongy’ Infrastructure Captured Almost 9 Billion Gallons of Water

The city is turning away from stormwater management practices that shuttle water to the ocean, building infrastructure that collects and directs it underground instead.

February 25, 2024 - Wired

Street view of 4th Avenue, a commercial street of shops and restaurants through the city center of downtown Seattle, Washington.

Study: Seattle Vision Zero Projects Not Bad for Business

An analysis of seven road safety project sites showed no negative economic impact on surrounding businesses.

27 minutes ago - UW News

Black-and-white photo of street with old black model T and brick building on the corner.

The History of Racial Zoning and Housing Discrimination in the US

More than a century of discriminatory housing policy divided cities and contributed to the racial wealth gap and other social and economic inequities.

1 hour ago - Urban Land Magazine

Aerial view of Vail, Colorado in winter with multi-story buildings in foregorund and snowy mountains in background.

Opinion: Resort Towns Must Take Action to Keep Housing Affordable

The workers that keep many popular tourist destinations running find it more difficult to find affordable housing near their jobs as more remote workers move to scenic resort areas.

2 hours ago - Governing

Senior Planner

Heyer Gruel Associates

Regional Transportation Planner

Crater Planning District Commission

Senior Planner- Long range

Prince William County Planning Office

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.