Fairfield RTM Members: Vote YES for Safe & Livable Streets Ordinance on October 26

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To the Editor:

Fairfielders contact your RTM representatives and encourage bipartisan support for the Safe and Livable Streets Ordinance. This ordinance will improve our community’s quality of life and save lives.

Bike and pedestrian injuries and deaths are a nationwide problem. To address this problem, the USDOT has created a $5 billion grant program, prioritizing Towns with Complete Streets ordinances. New Britain and Westport have secured Complete Streets funding ($32 million and $450,000). Connecticut’s DOT has also mandated Safe Streets design for all new projects.

Despite concerns about this being an election year, we urge RTM members to prioritize community safety over politics. Westport’s recent success obtaining grants was due to bipartisan support and the First Selectperson’s endorsement.

Fairfield made progress in 2018 adopting a Complete Street policy but done little to follow-up. RTM inaction or indecision may cause us to miss funding and result in further deaths.

Complete Streets will require future roadway planning and engineering to consider all users, not just cars. Key benefits:

  1. Safety: Our goal is zero deaths achieved through thoughtful road and sidewalk designs.
  2. Health: Promote activity and mental well-being with a network of pedestrian, bicycle, and public transportation facilities.
  3. Community: Enhance local businesses and community gathering spaces.
  4. Climate: Reduce car use and promote cycling and walking.

Don’t delay; it is time for the RTM to act. Lives are lost in an instant and applying for grants takes time. Let’s build a safer Fairfield where children can walk or bike to school and everyone can move around without fear.

RTM members, a vote for Safe Streets demonstrates your dedication to improving Fairfield and enhances our chances of securing a portion of the $5 billion USDOT grant. Together, we can create a safer and more livable community.

Email all 40 RTM members at rtm@fairfieldct.org.

Jeff Randolph, Candidate for TPZ, Bike & Ped Advocate

Sarah Roy, Former Chair of Fairfield Bike & Ped Committee

Anya Mezak, Member Fairfield Bike & Ped Committee