Livable Omaha transportation alternatives (2-14-12)


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  • Why do you like them? Because they are nice spaces for people to meet…
  • ….and move around in. They are pedestrian and bicycle friendly, providing for multi-modes of transportation.
  • Yet, most of Omahalooks like this because our transportation planning has focused on moving cars rather than moving people in the various ways they would like to get around…and this is the result.
  • If better transportation options were available, people in Omaha would use them….Survey summarized here:
  • To create those options, we need to design “livable” streetswith more than just cars in mind. What is “safe” for cars, is often not safe for pedestrians, bicyclists or people in wheel chairs or other mobility devices.
  • But what is safe for pedestrians and bicyclists is also safer for cars.
  • If we keep designing roads for cars, we’ll get more and more of this, and with it, more and more health, social and fiscal problems.
  • Pre-natal exposure to air pollution is correlated with fetal demise, pre-term delivery, and low birth weight
  • Residents of sprawling neighborhoods (in Atlanta) 35% more likely to be obese than in compact neighborhoods, even when controlling for race, age, sex, and income.In 2009, over 62.3 percent of adults in Douglas County reported being overweight and/or obese, increasing the risk of heart disease, arthritis, stroke and diabetes.The estimated cost of diabetes in Congressional District 2 in Nebraska in 2006 was $253 million
  • 27% of households earning <$20,000 do not have access to a car. 
  • Houses that are farther apart require longer roads, sewer and water lines, and this increases mileage on city-owned vehicles, emergency vehicles, school-buses, garbage trucks, etc.
  • The cost of road maintenance is averaged at 5.6 cents per mile per motor vehicle. Add the costs of parking (10 cents), crashes (8 cents), congestion (4 cents), and land costs and that’s another 28 cents per mile. Meanwhile, for slower, lighter, smaller bicycles, the costs add up to one cent per mile.
  • Omaha’s per capita funding of Metro ($29.52) ranks it 238th out of the 280 largest U.S. metro areas for public transit funding.  Omaha has 1 mile of mass transit per capita compared to national average of 1.87; 4.3 for Denver, 4.2 for Minneapolis.
  • Better design space, which is what the new draft guidance in the Omaha Transportation Master Plan will do.
  • Every $10 million invested in public transportation returns up to $30 million in business sales alone.
  • Simply shifting 50% of highway funds to transit would result in a net gain of 180,150 MORE jobs – without a single dollar of new spending.
  • Household savings—As much as $8,000 per year by owning one less car.
  • New research on cities in the upper Midwest showed that if inhabitants switched to bikes for half of their short trips, they would create a net societal health benefit of $3.5 billion per year from the increase in air quality and $3.8 billion in savings from smaller health care costs associated with better fitness and fewer mortalities from a decreased rate of car accidents.
  • One mile can be walked in about 15 minutes, or biked in about 5 minutes. 2/3 of all trips in the U.S. taken by car are less than 5 miles in distance (that’s only a 20-min bike ride).
  • Livable Omaha transportation alternatives (2-14-12)

    1. 1. Livable Omaha Think of the cities you like to visit – Minneapolis, Denver, Portland, San Francisco, Chicago
    2. 2. Vehicular Mobility Priority144th and W. Center 156th and Maple76th and Cass 84th and W. Center
    3. 3. Livable Omaha 2011 survey: 72: of residents favor increasing spending to expand and improve public transportation, sidewalks and bike lanes in Omaha 2009 survey: 92% of YPs in Omaha want improved public transportation options
    4. 4. Safety vs. Livability E. Dumbaugh, The Design of Safe Urban Roadsides: An Empirical Analysis, 2007
    5. 5. E. Dumbaugh, The Design of Safe Urban Roadsides: An Empirical Analysis, 2007
    6. 6. Induced traffic and perpetual widening
    7. 7. Livable Omaha People dying from air pollution-- 52,000 deaths in the U.S. each year (in Omaha’s that equates to 353 deaths per year)—more than from firearms, STDs, and illegal drug use combined
    8. 8. Livable Omaha Reduced life expectancy— 4 years for people living in car- dependent neighborhoods
    9. 9. Livable Omaha Increased risk for obesity— 6% for each hour spent driving
    10. 10. Livable Omaha Increased inequality— The young, disabled, poor, and elderly cannot get around at all if they cannot drive a car and do not have access to transportation alternatives.
    11. 11. Livable Omaha Decreased fiscal sustainability— One mile of urban freeway costs 2,500 times more per mile than a shared-use bike route
    12. 12. Livable Omaha In 2002, Omaha spent $179 per person on road construction and maintenance, compared to $29.52 per person on public transit
    13. 13. Livable Omaha The Solution: Mode Shift (to a Livable) Omaha
    14. 14. 1 2 Maximum number of cars on a Distribution of people served by street = capacity these cars3 4 Same number of people on a bus Same number of people on a pedestrian and bicycle friendly street
    15. 15. Harney Street - Now
    16. 16. Harney Street - After
    17. 17. 125th Street Looking North at Dodge Expressway - Now
    18. 18. 125th Street Looking North at Dodge Expressway - After
    19. 19. 13th at William - Now
    20. 20. 13th at William - After
    21. 21. Livable Omaha Economic development— For every $1 invested in public transportation, $5 is generated in economic returns
    22. 22. Livable Omaha Spending on transit generates more jobs than spending on highways
    23. 23. Livable Omaha
    24. 24. Livable Omaha Residents of “transit intensive” neighborhoods exercise more often, have longer life expectancies, and are healthier than residents of car-dependent neighborhoods
    25. 25. Livable Omaha 27% of all trips taken by automobile in the U.S. are less than one mile in distance
    26. 26. Livable Omaha For the young, elderly, poor and people with disabilities, public transit can provide access to things needed for everyday life
    27. 27. Livable Omaha What you can do
    28. 28. Livable Omaha ADD GRAPHIC OF POLICY PROCESS
    29. 29. Participate in planning processes:Omaha Transportation Master Plan Omaha Alternatives Analysis Heartland 2050 Regional Vision
    30. 30. Livable Omaha Contact your elected representatives about transportation issues. Omaha City Council Nebraska State Legislature U.S. Representative & Senators
    31. 31. Livable Omaha Participate in transportation advocacy groups: Omaha YP Transportation Group Mode Shift Omaha Omaha Bikes
    32. 32. Livable Omaha Walk the Walk
    33. 33. Livable Omaha Credits: A longer version of this presentation was created by Gerard Wellman for the Omaha YP Transportation Group.