We sent a questionnaire to the four people running for the Democratic nomination for the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race. The governor is an extremely important person in setting the state’s transportation priorities. We encourage all registered Democrats to vote in the primary on Tuesday, and we encourage everyone to vote in the general election in November.
We will be publishing the candidates’ responses here between now and Monday. For background on why we asked the question we did, see this blog post.
Survey and Answers
In the state of Pennsylvania, 12% of all traffic fatalities are bicyclists and pedestrians. While overall traffic fatalities are decreasing, bicycle and pedestrian deaths are not. Unlike our peers in New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, New York or almost any other state in the country, PennDOT does not have a bicycle and pedestrian office.
1. What value do you see in encouraging biking and walking in Pennsylvania?
In addition to the vital health and wellbeing value of encouraging biking and walking in Pennsylvania, I believe that these activities also can provide an economic and environmental impact in every region of our state.
Walking or biking provide Pennsylvanian’s with an alternative to driving that can save them money, while protecting the air we breathe by reducing carbon emissions. As governor, I would pledge to bring together organizations like Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia and BikePGH, with PennDOT and the state’s Department of Economic Development to develop a plan to create and promote more walkable and bike-friendly cities and communities. I strongly believe, that investing in our communities to enhance, improve and expand Pennsylvania’s walking/biking options also drives economic development, bringing more foot traffic into a community, as well as creating a safer, stronger community that we can all be proud.
2. Will you set a goal to reduce pedestrian and bicycle fatalities by half by 2025?
3. PennDOT needs to establish a bicycle and pedestrian office that is adequately staffed to:
- update PennDOT design manuals and train PennDOT engineers in current bicycle and pedestrian best practices,
- update and monitor the statewide bicycle and pedestrian master plans,
- assist MPOs, counties and municipalities in drafting bicycle and pedestrian master plans,
- develop a data-driven cost estimate of building out all proposed bicycle and pedestrian facilities, trails and bicycle routes statewide that can be included in the Long Range Transportation Plan.
Will you establish such an office?
4. Will you ask PennDOT and DCNR to set 10-year goals for the number of miles of bike lanes and trails to be built across Pennsylvania?
5. Will you support spending a percentage of federal Transportation Alternatives Program funds and Pennsylvania’s Multi-Modal Fund on Safe Routes to School projects?
6. Will you support speed camera enforcement for roads where excessive speeding is a particular safety hazard?