The Bicycle Coalition’s Acting Executive Director Sarah Clark Stuart was recently named to Mayor-Elect Jim Kenney’s Transition Team, and we’re very excited for her to bring the Coalition’s vision to the field. And speaking of that field, perhaps you’ve heard: It’s crowded. In fact, there are about 170 people on the team. We spoke with Sarah about how she hopes to stand out on that team, and what she hopes to bring to the conversation.
What are the top priorities you want to advocate for as part of the transition team?
I am slated to work on developing recommendations about Vision Zero, how the Streets Department can put the city’s streets and sidewalks into a good state of repair, expanding bike share, improving the pedestrian realm, and an office of Complete Streets.
Kenney has already committed to our Vision Zero platform. Is the main focus regarding that between now and the inauguration?
Yes, Vision Zero is one of Mayor-Elect Kenney’s top priorities. Considerable analytical work and interagency communication and organization has been done by the Nutter Administration to lay the foundation for a Vision Zero policy and action plan and we are working to learn as much as possible to share in our recommendations.
The transition team is pretty big this year. Who else on the transition team are you excited to work with?
I am working with several SEPTA staff, retired MOTU staff and one of my trail colleagues, Joe Syrnick from Schuylkill River Development Corporation.
What do you see as the biggest impediment to getting our work done befor and during the Kenney Administration?
Resources are the limiting factor. The Transportation side of the Streets Department has been very under resourced and needs more capital and operating funding to pay for equipment, paving materials and new staff to get the city’s streets and sidewalks back into a good state of repair. In order to fix high-crash intersections, resources need to be made available to make low-cost safety improvements. Additionally, resources will be needed to reach a wider audience to deliver safety messages.