Complete Streets Support Healthy Communities

A "complete street" is one which is more accessible to a broader range of users within the community. By redesigning streets with pedestrians, cyclists, transit users and drivers in mind, we create more livable communities for everyone. To get there, a complete streets initiative can use any number of innovative tools, among them are bike lanes, wide shoulders, medians with greenspace, crosswalks, and audible pedestrian signals. Complete streets are part of a remarkably successful planning trend sweeping North America and the world.

The Green Party believes that complete streets will go a long way to making Ontario's communities more safe, healthy and vibrant. Better transportation networks are an economic boon, supporting small businesses and increasing the efficient flow of people, goods and resources. At the same time, safe access to alternative modes of transportation promote healthy choices at a time when our health care system is overburdened and our streets are clogged with traffic. A complete streets program could go a long way to reducing the staggering costs associated with obesity and pollution.

The Liberal government has yet to grasp this approach. The recent delay in public transit funding is a step in the wrong direction. The Green Party of Ontario commends those working to achieve safer, healthier communities, including the Share the Road Cycling Coalition and community leaders who have signed on to a letter encouraging their municipal candidates to support a complete streets approach.

These leaders need Ontario to support its municipalities to develop safer, healthier streets for everyone.

Darcy Higgins
Director of Policy & Communications