More groups weigh in on DOT's long-range plan

Friday, March 06, 2009

From a statement submitted to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation by 1000 Friends of Wisconsin, Midwest Environmental Advocates, WISPIRG, Center on Wisconsin Strategies, Clean Wisconsin, and League of Wisconsin Municipalities:

Thank you for this opportunity to provide comments on the Connections 2030 plan. Connections 2030 represents a welcome change in Wisconsin DOT’s approach to multimodal transportation planning. The organization of the transportation topics by transportation themes rather than by transportation modes allows for a better evaluation of maximizing transportation efficiency. Planning staff deserve recognition for the new approach. We would like to submit the following specific comments to WisDOT for consideration when drafting the final Connections 2030 plan document. Briefly, we encourage WisDOT and the state of Wisconsin to:

• Provide more transportation mode choices, with priority placed on local and regional transit, passenger rail, and bicycle and pedestrian facilities.
• Use federal and state transportation funds to finance more low-carbon transportation infrastructure such as transit, rail, bicycle, and pedestrian facilities.
• Provide more seamless connections between and among transportation modes.
• Develop policies to reduce overall vehicle miles driven (VMD)/vehicle miles traveled (VMT).
• Pursue policies to reduce green house gas emissions.
• Follow a “fix-it-first” policy for construction and maintenance of highways and streets.
• Recognize the important economic contributions of transit in both terms of return on investment and in stimulating local economies through new development.
• Pursue demand management policies where practical as a preferred alternative to expanding infrastructure capacity.
• Conduct annual accounting of progress toward the transportation goals recommended by Governor Doyle’s Task Force on Global Warming.