Vision Zero is, at its core, about equity. It is about setting and achieving the morally imperative goal of ensuring that everyone can move about their communities safely.
2016 was a monumental year for Vision Zero across the United States.
The number of cities committing to Vision Zero more than doubled, and interest in adopting meaningful, action-driven policies for safe streets has spread from a few early-adopter, big, coastal cities to communities large and small across the country. As we roll into 2017 with a challenge that is as big as ever, it’s helpful to look back at the trends — both promising and troubling — that shaped Vision Zero progress in 2016.
In the wake of appalling violence in Minnesota, Louisiana, and Texas during the past few weeks and swelling racial tensions nationwide, a spotlight is shining on systemic inequities in our nation’s law enforcement system. These tragedies are influencing our thinking across the country. Personally, I am thinking differently about Vision Zero. Not only as it relates to law enforcement, but also in other ways that U.S. communities are interpreting and implementing Vision Zero efforts as they relate to social justice and equity. Admittedly, at this point, I have more questions than answers. I acknowledge that I feel uncomfortable talking about some of these issues, and that I’m far from being an expert in this area. Yet I do feel a responsibility, as the leader of the Vision Zero Network, to share my concerns, including places that I think Vision Zero may have misstepped early in its short history, and to look for solutions.
As the momentum around Vision Zero spreads across the United States, one of the most common questions we hear from interested stakeholders is: What makes a Vision Zero city? We know that achieving the goal of zero traffic fatalities and serious injuries can’t be achieved with a “business as usual” mindset. While Vision Zero is […]