Archived News Release: June 24, 2022 - Ann Arbor has been recognized as a Gold-level community and “Walk Friendly" designation by the Walk Friendly Communities program (WFC). The WFC recognizes 23 cities and towns across the United States for prioritizing pedestrians and creating safe and inviting places to walk. The WFC designation is awarded based on a detailed review of a community's sustained efforts to elevate the needs of pedestrians across all areas of transportation programs.
“This designation highlights the coordinated efforts among our elected officials, city leadership, staff and the residents of Ann Arbor to make our city a comfortable, accessible and safe place to walk," explained Raymond Hess, City of Ann Arbor transportation manager. “While we recognize there is still much work to be done, this designation underscores our continued commitment to the implementation of the city's Moving Together Towards Vision Zero Transportation Master Plan where we seek to achieve zero deaths and zero emissions."
Since 2007, the City of Ann Arbor has added 94 crosswalks, 28 pedestrian refuge islands and 49 rectangular rapid flash beacons. Since 2013, the city has added 11.1 miles of new sidewalks, bringing the city's total to 437.6 miles. This data, along with much more, can be found on the city's Sidewalk Gaps Prioritization and Progress dashboard. According to the 2020 Census, 16.5% of Ann Arbor residents walk to work.
WFC is a national recognition program developed to encourage cities and towns across the country to develop and support walking environments with an emphasis on safety, mobility, access and comfort. Managed by the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center (HSRC), the program distinguishes communities leading the way in walkability and seeks to share their stories to inspire other communities to move toward their own innovative solutions. In the 12 years since the program began, it has recognized 82 cities and towns across 32 States with WFC designations.
To learn more about Walk Friendly Communities, visit www.walkfriendly.org.
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