Resolution R-2021-1 Complete Streets


WHEREAS, safe, convenient, and accessible transportation for all users is a priority of the Village of Shorewood Hills;

WHEREAS, the Village of Shorewood Hills has countless community assets, including a public elementary school located centrally in the Village; convenient access to retail, transit, hospitals, and the University; extensive community gardening acreage; access to Lake Mendota for boating, swimming, fishing, and winter activities; trees and native vegetation that provide habitat for birds, pollinators, and other biota important for the ecosystem; access to the Lakeshore Nature Preserve and the Biocore Prairie; an Olympic-size community pool and other recreational amenities; summer programs for children and adults that are held at these recreational facilities and in the Village’s various outdoor park spaces; charming architecture and landscaping; traditional community events such as the Fourth of July Celebration and Fireworks; and history that goes back before 500 AD, when indigenous inhabitants built earthen mounds in the area and lived along the shores of Lake Mendota;

WHEREAS, in the past decade the Village population has increased by 40 percent, and technological and societal advances have led to an increase in vehicles entering and exiting the village to deliver meals, groceries, and other goods and services.

WHEREAS, the VillageBoard of Trustees, in 2004, adopted “Safer, More Walkable Community” policies aimed at traffic calming;

WHEREAS, the Village Board of Trustees, on April 14, 2009, adopted the Pyare Neighborhood Plan, in which “pedestrian friendliness” and “pedestrian/bicycle connectivity” rank among the top 4 “quality of life” concerns;

WHEREAS, the Village Board of Trustees, on December 15, 2009, adopted a Comprehensive Plan recommending ongoing implementation of the “Safer, More Walkable Community” policy;

WHEREAS, the Village Board of Trustees, on November 18, 2019, unanimously approved and adopted the Sustainability Plan 2020-2025, which codifies the Village’s longstanding commitment to environmental, economic, and social sustainability and calls for, among other things, “safe streets that support people-powered and public transportation;”

WHEREAS, the Sustainability Plan 2020-2025, includes the strategy “increase the availability, accessibility, and safety of alternative transportation (walking and biking) and public transportation to and from the Village” and suggests these tools for accomplishing this strategy: 

  • Installing sidewalks and crosswalks where appropriate;
  • Installing commuter bike lanes where appropriate;
  • Working with the City of Madison to extend or reroute bus lines to make more parts of the Village accessible via bus and/or enable rapid transit bus and/or light rail initiatives;
  • Support and advocate for the bus rapid transit (BRT) system; 
  • Providing bike racks at all municipal buildings and other Village destinations (such as parks and businesses);
  • Considering walking and/or biking easements at all commercial redevelopments in the Village;
  • Enforcing traffic laws including Village speed limits; and
  • Promoting annual Bike to School and Walk to School days and programming; 

WHEREAS, the Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change Report (published December 2020), in the chapter titled “Safe, clean, and complete streets,” recommends the following strategies:

  • Require the WisDOT to incorporate Complete Street designs in all state roadway projects.
  • Restore eminent domain acquisition for pedestrian and bike trails.
  • Increase state funding for the Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) and direct a portion of funds to under-resourced communities and environmental justice communities.
  • Provide funding for bicycle programs and bike infrastructure in low-income communities.

WHEREAS, the term “Complete Streets” describes a comprehensive, integrated, ADA-compliant transportation network with infrastructure and design that allow safe and convenient travel along and across streets for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, persons with disabilities, motorists, movers of commercial goods, users and operators of public transportation, seniors, children, youth, and families;

WHEREAS, the lack of Complete Streets is dangerous for pedestrians, bicyclists, and public transportation riders, particularly children, older adults, and persons with disabilities; on average;

WHEREAS, while overall traffic fatalities have gone down in recent decades, more pedestrians and cyclists were killed in 2018 in the United States than in any year since 1990, and in 2019 there was a five percent year-over-year increase in pedestrian deaths, making 2019 the most unsafe year for pedestrians since 1988;

WHEREAS, distracted driving, defined as a driver who is driving while doing another activity that takes attention away from driving, increases the chance of a motor vehicle crash, and every day about 8 people in the United States are killed in crashes that are reported to involve a distracted driver;

WHEREAS, Complete Streets improve public health and safety by reducing the risk of injuries and fatalities from traffic collisions for users of all modes of transportation;

WHEREAS, streets that are designed with the safety and convenience of pedestrians and bicyclists in mind increase the number of people walking and bicycling;

WHEREAS, a balanced transportation system that includes Complete Streets is conducive to streets that are lively with people walking and bicycling to everyday destinations, such as schools, shops, restaurants, businesses, parks, transit, and jobs, which in turn enhances neighborhood economic vitality, and livability;

WHEREAS, encouraging people to walk, bicycle, and use public transit saves energy resources, reduces air pollution, and reduces emissions of global warming gases;

WHEREAS, among Wisconsinites, an estimated 9 percent have diagnosed diabetes, an additional 34 percent are prediabetic, an estimated 34 percent have hypertension, and stroke has been the fifth leading cause of death in recent years;

WHEREAS, being active can prevent many chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cancer, stroke, and heart disease, and, accordingly, convenient places for physical activity play a large role in preventing chronic diseases; 

WHEREAS, physical activity and, specifically, “engaging communities to increase options for all people to be active, including the ability to safely walk and bike” is one of the top priorities in Wisconsin's comprehensive state health improvement plan;

WHEREAS, catastrophes like the COVID-19 pandemic underscore the importance of safe, accessible outdoor transportation networks for all users;

WHEREAS, Complete Streets encourage an active lifestyle by creating opportunities to integrate exercise into daily activities, thereby helping to reduce health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, as well as certain cancers, stroke, asthma, and depression; and

WHEREAS, in light of the foregoing benefits and considerations, the Village of Shorewood Hills wishes to improve its commitment to Complete Streets and desires that its streets form a comprehensive and integrated transportation network promoting safe, equitable, and convenient travel for all users while preserving flexibility, recognizing community context, and using the latest and best design guidelines and standards.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Trustees of the Village of Shorewood Hills, State of Wisconsin, as follows:

  1. That the Village of Shorewood Hills adopts this Complete Streets Resolution.
  2. That the Village of Shorewood Hills’s Comprehensive Plan shall incorporate this Complete Streets Resolution and principles and plans consistent with this Resolution.
  3. That the Village of Shorewood Hills will develop policies and implement practices consistent with the Complete Streets principles enumerated in this resolution.

PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Trustees of the Village of Shorewood Hills, State of Wisconsin, on the 19th day of January, 2021, by the following vote:    7 - 0   .

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