Communities, businesses and states designated as bicycle-friendly are working to encourage active and livable streets for all users including; pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities. A Complete Streets policy and guidance for implementation are vital to any bicycle-friendly effort and requires consideration of all modes of travelling in every aspect of the transportation planning process. Bicyclists are at the core of this movement because Complete Streets mean more access, mobility and comfort on road infrastructure.
Cities, states and business rally behind the Complete Streets Policies because they mean improvements in sustain ability, personal health and economic development. Building Complete Streets calls for a broad spectrum collaboration, sets good standards, builds strong and secured communities.
BICYCLISTS SET THE PACE
Bicyclists often lead the push for Complete Streets infrastructures. Their passion for improvements for cycling goes further to ensuring making roads better for everyone, a focal point for a community to play around, before the policy is put in place. Nigerian roads were built for cars with no thought for bicyclists with little or no thought for pedestrians. With policy change, we are yet to enjoy a citywide culture shift across board from elected leaders, city staff, and ordinary citizens; everyone. Implementation of creative transportation options like a light rail and bike racks on buses energized constituents. The authorities will receive calls from citizens wanting to know when their area will get bicycle lanes.
IT IS A COMMUNITY TASK
Complete Streets benefit bicyclists, pedestrians, transit users and people with disabilities, youth, and older people through better-connected facility networks. Implementing a Complete Streets policy is better done by building partnerships with the host community.
Complete street policies can be implemented nationwide as the transportation sectors strive to improve. As the population grow, policies should be built off one another. Business communities can adopt the complete street policy, cycling for health and fitness program. Hospitals planners can adopt program to expand their health and fitness periscope. Hospital communities’ health and active living system can benefits from bicycling. Hospitals can build-in trails and make connections internally and externally to enable people move around their campus by foot or on bicycles. As a result, we will be noticing prompt recovery and lower healthcare costs. The importance of implementing an integrated bicycle friendly system, built environment and its role in achieving an important- health and well-ness objectives, is simply about building the connections.
The Advocacy Advance Collaboration is task to make that difference for bicyclists everywhere in Nigeria by funding researches to help bicyclists and offering grants to local advocates. One of such grant will help to teach planners and engineers in Nigeria about the needs and requirements of bicyclists. Our interest in educating planners and engineers is critical and so the state’s civil engineers and planners must be well equipped with this background training on bicycle infra-structural apparatuses. Advocacy has been our core focus and active in the state. Speaking at conferences, offering continuing training, workshops, seminars and lectures, but did not feel that we have really been successful at reaching targeted audiences. With the Advocacy Advance grant in hand, we shall set out to create a course that would educate planners and engineers on the needs of bicyclists. Our special introduction to bicycle planning, is our direct program designed to orientate bicyclists on the road and how to coexist and interact with other road users, Tagged; ‘here is a bicycle lane’. The seminar starts with a 15-minutes abridged Traffic Skills TS100 course teaching them some highlights of the course evolving to show interactions on the roadway, could come in video.
The courses are planned for different locations around the states and LBN realistically hopes for people to attend and complete these courses. We do publicity to municipalities, engineering and planning firms, mainly sending postcards speaking about these courses. Collaborations are drawn from engineering and planning firms, the state department of transportation, and some the Federal Road Safety Commission, and the Police highway Patrol departments.
Engineers & Mr. Bicycle believes that one of the keys to their success will be the access to continuing education credits for planners and engineers. It is hoped to be expensive and extensive to earn the right to offer certifications. That is why their attendance is so highly important and esteemed. For planners, LBN is working with the International Planning Association to offer certification program to people keeping up with their certification courses. For engineers, their requirements may vary state-by-state and in-line with the IEEE certification requirements, and for our consumption, it simply requires that the person offering the course should be an “expert in the field.”