Walking is the most cost-effective way to get people to and from public transportation. However, in many cases little attention has been given to making safe pedestrian routes to get to transit stations. Most people would be willing to walk to public transportation if sidewalks, traffic calmed streets and safe and convenient ways to cross the street were provided. The New Jersey Department of Transportation established the Safe Streets to Transit Program (SSTT) to provide funding for counties and municipalities that are incorporating walking into their public transportation systems.
Walkability is increasingly important yet many communities in the U.S. lack safe and convenient pedestrian infrastructure to get people where they need to go. Many commuters cite safety as the main reason for why they drive to transit stations. The purpose of the SSTT program is to promote walking to and from public transportation systems. In order for projects to be considered for SSTT funding, they must meet a number of eligibility requirements.
Projects considered for SSTT funding include:
- Intersection safety improvements
- New and improved sidewalks and curb ramps
- Traffic calming measures to slow drivers in the area
- Pedestrian-oriented area lighting
Additionally, the proposed project must demonstrate that it will increase overall transit usage and improve pedestrian access and network connectivity.
How to Use
Planners, local officials and community leaders in New Jersey and beyond seeking funding for transportation improvement projects should further research the SSTT program. This program should be considered by planners and community leaders in New Jersey looking to make improvements to pedestrian infrastructure near transportation systems.