USDOT Secretary Ray LaHood is making his mark, and the result will be better opportunities for active transportation projects. Check out this press release.
In a nutshell, the criteria used to evaluate projects for funding are expanding. Instead of simply looking at cost of project vs. cut in commuter time (a formula that benefits roadwidening), the new formula will also consider environmental benefits and economic opportunities that could be realized by the project.
This new rule, acknowledging the need for livable communities, should be applauded. Public transit projects will be the big winners with these new rules, but bike and ped projects should also get a leg up. We will keep you apprised of any further news on this subject.