02/28/11

Creating a Model Enforcement and Awareness ProgramCreating a Model Enforcement and Awareness Program

From Steve Clark, Bicycling and Walking Program Manager

The Traffic Safety Triangle involves three big “E”s: Engineering, Education and Enforcement.  Bike Walk Twin Cities has invested a lot in engineering (trails, bike lanes, safer crossings, etc.) and in education (Bike Walk Ambassadors, St Paul Smart-Trips, LCI Seminars, Leadership Breakfasts and other workshops, Web site pages, etc.) but nothing in the third E, enforcement.  Until Now!

We are happy to announce that Bike Walk Twin Cities will be working with the City of St. Paul on a campaign focused on protecting the most vulnerable road users through awareness and enforcement.
What is truly exciting about this campaign is that it was conceived by St. Paul leaders who want their city to become famous for its pedestrian friendliness. They realize that in order to make St. Paul a place where people feel safe to cross the street, where people will desire to get out and explore the City on foot or on bike, stronger enforcement and educational efforts need to happen.

Bike Walk Twin Cities is excited to work with St. Paul to create a model program. Our goal is to create a program with measurable outcomes so that its success can be transferred to other communities striving for greater “livablility.”  

In December, a “Request for Qualifications” (RFQ) was released announcing the new campaign and soliciting individuals or firms with the experience to lead such a project. Qualified applicants had to display their experience and ability to reach and teach law enforcement personnel about traffic law as it pertains to the rights and responsibilities of pedestrians and bicyclists. In addition, the qualified firm will help inspire City employees and other fleet service operators of major employers in St. Paul to begin setting the example in a “St. Paul Stops for Pedestrians” campaign.  Four proposals were received, a six-person selection committee was established, the firms were evaluated, follow-up calls to references were made, and we’re now at the point of entering into a contract.

This spring and summer to keep an eye out for campaign bumper stickers on all City vehicles. This will be followed by a media awareness campaign, then a law enforcement training workshop (for all NTP eligible communities), and finally both a selective enforcement campaign and positive reinforcement campaign.

All for what?
Friendlier streets in St. Paul and beyond!