As of Thursday, December 6th, the Baltimore Complete Streets ordinance is law. Mayor Pugh signed the legislation earlier this week, just days before the bill would have become law automatically.
Over the past two years, a broad coalition was formed to support and promote Complete Streets. The Baltimore Complete Streets Coalition is comprised of over 30 organizations including local groups like Bikemore, The League for People with Disabilities, No Boundaries Coalition and neighborhood associations, statewide organizations like the Maryland Builders Industry Association, and national groups such as AARP, the American Heart Association and Safe Routes to Schools.
This bill is about giving communities the power to work with DOT to build more equitable and healthy transportation infrastructure. When we began this effort, I aimed to set a new national standard for complete streets policies, including answering the imperative to put equity at the core of all transportation measures. So many community leaders and stakeholders have stepped up to build a policy that is truly best in class. Now it's time to work together to implement complete streets to ensure all our communities see real benefits from transportation decisions. - Councilman Ryan Dorsey
The bill received national recognition when the National Complete Streets Coalition named Baltimore’s Complete Streets Ordinance one of 2017’s best initiatives and named Councilman Dorsey a Complete Streets Champion. Complete Streets prioritizes the safety of all people using Baltimore’s streets and prioritizes multi-modal transportation. Complete Streets often have slower speed limits, wide sidewalks and crosswalks, protected bike lanes, bus lanes and shelters, and beautification like trees and plantings. The bill also contains several equity-focused provisions to address the disparities created by decades of structurally racist and car-oriented road design.
Baltimore's Complete Streets ordinance is a remarkable new model for the nation not just because of its strong, direct approach to equity and implementation, but also because of the broad, engaged coalition responsible for its adoption. The National Complete Streets Coalition is proud to recognize Councilman Ryan Dorsey, Bikemore, and the City of Baltimore for their leadership. - Heather Zaccaro Program Manager, National Complete Streets Coalition
Bikemore was an early champion of passing a robust, equity-focused Complete Streets ordinance, working to place it as a priority in the mayor’s transition report and drafting bill language for introduction alongside Councilman Ryan Dorsey.
We’re thrilled that the mayor has signed the legislation into law, and will continue to work over the next few months to ensure implementation is as intended.
None of this work is possible without the support of our volunteers and donors. Thank you!