Ecology Ottawa is very pleased to hear that the Board of Health and the City of Ottawa Health Unit have recommended to City Council that it pass a strong Complete Streets policy and that city staff be directed to review the 10 Key Elements of a Comprehensive Complete Streets Policy.
At its meeting on Monday, Oct. 21, members of the Board of Health passed a Motion and the Complete Streets relevant portions are as follows:
Agenda Item # 10.
HEALTHY EATING ACTIVE LIVING STRATEGY UPDATE: SCHOOL-BASED ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION
That the Board of Health for the City of Ottawa Health Unit approve:
1. That the Board of Health write letters to the City of Ottawa’s Transit Commission, Transportation Committee and Council supporting aspects of the Draft Ottawa Transportation Master Plan, the Draft Ottawa Cycling Plan and the Draft Ottawa Pedestrian Plan that foster the development of healthy, active communities, specifically the implementation of:
a. The Complete Streets Policy for road design, operation and maintenance, as outlined in Action 7-1 in the Draft Transportation Master Plan;
5. That Ottawa Public Health staff be directed to work with Planning, Growth Management to review the 10 Key Elements of a Comprehensive Complete Streets Policy that are promoted by Complete Streets for Canada as they relate to the Draft Transportation Master Plan, the Draft Cycling Plan and the Draft Pedestrian Plan.
Ecology Ottawa is pleased the City of Ottawa has committed to passing a Complete Streets policy, but we are concerned that it may not be effective, especially if it does not contain the 10 Key Elements of a Comprehensive Complete Streets Policy.
As noted by Ryan Anders Whitney, who monitors policy progress on behalf of the Complete Streets for Canada program of the Toronto Centre for Active Transportation:
Over 500 Complete Streets policies have been adopted across Canada and the United States and the most successful policies are those that include the ten elements.
Ecology Ottawa presented to the Board of Health on Oct. 21 and urged it to voice support for Complete Streets and the 10 Key Elements of a Comprehensive Policy, and we are pleased that it passed a Motion to that effect. Now we must all ensure the City of Ottawa incorporates those 10 key elements into its yet-to-be drafted policy.
Read the entire Board of Health Motion at the link to the Disposition below, and please don’t forget to sign our related petition for Complete Streets for Ottawa.