State and city planning goals addressed by the actions recommended in this section:
- Economic Opportunities
- Affordable Housing
- Climate Change
- Energy Resilience
- Compact Urban Development
- Efficient Transportation Options
- Neighborhood Livability
- Natural Resources
Transportation has been mentioned numerous times in other sections of the Green Paper such as “Land Use” so this part will be mostly short reviews to consolidate previous comments
Twenty minute neighborhoods can reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). The neighborhood plan could encourage redevelopment along River Road that would put goods and services closer to residents to reduce the need for vehicle trips.
Turning River Road into a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor would reduce VMT. BRT would be an excellent asset to catalyze other positive efforts such as apartments that offered bus passes and catered to bike riders and people who don’t want or need their own car.
“Bus Rapid Transit is an integrated system of facilities, services and amenities that collectively improves the speed, reliability and identity of bus transit.” BRT’s goal is to offer an approach to transportation that will attract more people to take the bus rather than drive a car. BRT is sometimes referred to as light rail on the cheap because it replicates many of the benefits of light rail but costs far less.
Observers of BRT generally applaud the concept as a way to encourage people to use transit more and cars less. BRT can also stimulate economic development along its corridors. A study about Eugene’s BRT suggests it has been a modest success in creating certain types of jobs near the bus stops.
Possibly just as important for stimulating economic development is the appearance of street frontage and how the city manages potential new developments, often referred to as Transit Oriented Development (TOD), that BRT brings into play. Furthermore, as the this Green Paper advocates, city policies and services can be designed to attract green and resilient kinds of development. View a PDF of the Eugene BRT study here.
New higher density mixed use development that puts goods and services closer to residents can also reduce the need for cars.
Constructing Tiny homes, ADUs and accessory structures creates greater density. More convenient transit such as BRT service reduces the need to have a car and fits well with lower income residents who might find small living spaces attractive.
Kids need safe walking and biking to school. Many streets in River Road are narrow and have large heritage trees. There is a need to make more effective use of many streets in River Road before deciding to widen them. New street management ideas such as “advisory bike lanes” could help. These alternatives to widening streets can save an enormous amount of money along with neighborhood character.