When Small Projects Make a Big Impact

Small, mundane infrastructure projects can make meaningful changes for pedestrian and bike safety.

1 minute read

May 19, 2024, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Close-up from back of woman walking on crosswalk with two small children on either side of her riding bicycles with training wheels.

polack / Adobe Stock

“While the multi-million dollar highway project might sound impressive, it is the small-scale infrastructure projects—bike lanes, raised crossings, and the like—that are most visible and tangible to people’s lives,” write Chris McCahill and Katya Spear in a piece published by the Mayors Innovation Project. The article calls out the minimal federal investment that goes toward pedestrian and bike infrastructure and highlights the benefits of smaller projects.

According to the authors, “Small-scale infrastructure projects are a powerful tool to allow local leaders to tell better and more effective stories about how infrastructure investments are benefiting individuals and communities.” Projects as simple as a new crosswalk or an expanded sidewalk can create immediate, tangible change in people’s everyday lives.

The authors list the federal and regional grant programs and funding streams that local jurisdictions can leverage to fund these types of projects. They strongly recommend that cities and states work together to access funding sources and promote a vision with clear priorities for road safety.

Tuesday, May 14, 2024 in Mayors Innovation Project

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