While it may seem like eons away, 2024 is just around the corner. Oregon DOT's is currently planning for what to invest in the 2024-2027 timeframe (referred by policy wonks as the Surface Transportation Improvement Plan, or STIP). ODOT has suggested five different funding scenarios, seen below:
As you might be able to tell, there is only one option which significantly increases funding for bicycle and pedestrian improvements: the "Non-Highway" scenario.
That's why we need you to reach out to the Oregon Transportation Commission and share why you think we need to invest in the Non-Highway Funding Scenario by December 1st. You can share your comments here: https://www.oregon.gov/odot/Get-Involved/Pages/OTC-Comments.aspx
If this is your first time writing to the Commission, don't worry. The more personal, the better. Here's a template you can use:
Subject: Support the Non-Highway STIP Funding Scenario
Body: Dear Oregon Transportation Commissioners,
I urge you to support the Non-Highway Funding Scenario for the 2024-2027 STIP. The Non-Highway scenario does the most to address equity, fight the climate crisis, and to end the epidemic of traffic violence for people walking and rolling.
< Insert your personal testimony here >
Sincerely, <Your Name>
If you want to share some statistics, here are just some of the reasons we should be investing in the Non-Highway scenario:
- While only 3.7% of people walked to work in 2017, over 16% of the deaths on Oregon's roadways in 2017 were pedestrians. (Sources: ACS 5-Yr 2017, ODOT 5-Yr Crash Summary Report)
- ODOT's deadly orphan highways in the Metro region continue to ignored, with poor sidewalk coverage, no or substandard bike lanes, and high speeds.
- Transportation accounts for 40% of carbon emissions in the state. (Source: Oregon DEQ)
- Non-highway projects create 4 more jobs per $1M spent than highway projects (Source: AARP)
- Every $1 spent on completing Gresham's Active Transportation Plan will generate $2.48 of benefits related to improved air quality, household transportation savings, and reduced healthcare costs over 23 years. (Source: Multnomah County REACH)
- Every $1 spent on completing Portland's 2030 Bike Plan will generate $20 in benefits through reduced healthcare costs, transportation savings, and statistical lives saved over 50 years. (Source: Gotschi, 2010)
- Building bike lanes has repeatedly shown to increase business activity, particularly and along Main Streets. (Source: PSU TREC)
While Bike Loud has co-signed a letter supporting the Non-Highway Scenario, along with the Oregon Environmental Council, Bend Bikes, WashCo Bike Coalition, Verde NW, OPAL Environmental Justice, and other great organizations, we still need you!
Tell the Oregon Transportation Commission why you think we should invest in the Non-Highway Funding Scenario by December 1st here: https://www.oregon.gov/odot/Get-Involved/Pages/OTC-Comments.aspx