May 14, 2018
City Council Business Meeting and Public Hearing on the Proposed FY 2019 Budget
Comments Made by Kate Cavazza, Sustain Charlotte
Good evening Mayor Lyles, Members of City Council, and Staff,
My name is Kate Cavazza and I am the Bicycle Program Manager at Sustain Charlotte. Tonight I am here to express Sustain Charlotte’s support for the transportation funding in the proposed 2019 budget.
Specifically, we support the proposed:
$4 million for bicycle travel to begin implementing the city’s bicycle plan.
$30 million for sidewalk and pedestrian safety to continue implementing the city’s pedestrian plan and program.
- $2 million to fund CDOT’s new Vision Zero program, which will work to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injuries.
By funding the bicycle, pedestrian, and Vision Zero plans that were adopted by Council last year, you will move Charlotte one step closer to becoming a world-class city for walking and biking.
More funding for complete sidewalks and bike networks will help reverse the decline in transit ridership since 80% of transit riders walk or bike to and from their transit stops.
It is not a secret that we have a long way to go to compete with our peer cities’ biking and pedestrian infrastructure.
Our partners at the national cycling advocacy organization, PeopleforBikes recently gave Charlotte a score of just 2.2 out of 5 in their new City Ratings System for bikeability. We have a lot of catching up to do.
And 2017 was the most tragic for pedestrians in Charlotte’s history. 27 pedestrians were hit and killed by cars on our City’s streets. In just a single year.
As you move toward adoption of the 2019 budget, we urge to you to fully support the City Manager’s recommended funding of the bicycle, pedestrian and Vision Zero programs this year, next year, and every year to come so community members all around the city can have equal access to safe, affordable, and healthy transportation choices no matter where they live.