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Bike & pedestrian master plans

Health Factors: Diet & Exercise Housing & Transit
Decision Makers: Community Development Professionals Local Government
Evidence Rating: Some Evidence
Population Reach: 100% of WI's population
Impact on Disparities: No impact on disparities likely

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Description

Bicycle and pedestrian master plans establish a framework to increase walking and biking trails, and improve connectivity of non-auto paths and trails in a particular locality.

Expected Beneficial Outcomes

Increased physical activity
Increased active transportation
Reduced injuries
Reduced vehicle miles traveled
Reduced emissions

Evidence of Effectiveness

There is some evidence that bicycle and pedestrian master plans increase physical activity by enhancing access to places for activity and increasing land available for physical activity (Brownson 2006, Yang 2010, CG-Physical activity). However, additional evidence is needed to confirm effects.

Infrastructure improvements supporting cycling combined with informational outreach activities such as master plans have been shown to increase cycling by modest amounts (Yang 2010). Bicycling and pedestrian infrastructure improvements such as bicycle lanes, bicycle racks, bicycle paths/walking trails, and shared bicycle programs can also promote physical activity, especially as part of a comprehensive package of interventions such as a bicycle and pedestrian master plan (Parker 2011Pucher 2010). Transportation and travel policies alone may or may not lead to behavior change (CG-Physical activity). Bicycle and pedestrian master plans have also been associated with lower rates of injury among pedestrians (Kerr 2013).

Replacing automotive trips with biking and walking can reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) and emissions at relatively low cost, although the long-term effect on traffic reduction is likely minor (RAND-Sorenson 2008, Salon 2012). Costs for infrastructure improvements vary significantly both by locale and type of improvement, for example the median cost is $540 for a bicycle rack, $122,610 for a pedestrian wooden bridge overpass, $89,470 per mile for a bicycle lane, and $261,000 per mile for a paved multi-use trail (UNC-Bushell 2013). A Netherlands-based cost-benefit analysis suggests that investments in improved bicycle infrastructure and facilities yields positive net benefits in the long-term (Fishman 2015). 

Implementation

United States

Numerous states, regions, and municipalities have bicycle or pedestrian master plans, including: Arizona, Idaho, Florida, New Jersey, Vermont, Anne Arundel County (Maryland), Austin (Texas), Chapel Hill (North Carolina), Denver (Colorado), Los Angeles, New York City, and Seattle (PBIC-Sample plans). 

Walk Friendly Communities is a national recognition program that supports and encourages efforts to enhance safer walking environments, especially those using master plans. Walk Friendly Communities have been recognized in 32 states. Seattle, WA is the only platinum level community; 15 communities are recognized as gold, 14 as silver, 25 as bronze, and 17 as honorable mentions (WFC-State map). 

Wisconsin

Wisconsin has a statewide Pedestrian Policy Plan and Madison/Dane County has a bicycling plan (PBIC-Sample plans).

Walk Friendly Communities has recognized 3 communities in Wisconsin. LaCrosse and Shorewood are recognized at the bronze level and Cedarburg as an honorable mention (WFC-State map).

Implementation Resources

ALBD - Active Living by Design (ALBD). Increasing physical activity and healthy eating through community design. Accessed on December 1, 2015
APHA-Transportation toolkit - American Public Health Association (APHA). APHA online toolkit: Transportation and health toolkit. Accessed on March 29, 2016
ChangeLab-Healthy plans 2012 - ChangeLab Solutions, Raimi & Associates. How to create and implement healthy general plans: A toolkit for building healthy, vibrant communities. 2012. Accessed on March 3, 2016
ChangeLab-Roadmap - ChangeLab Solutions. A roadmap for healthier general plans step by step: Who does what? Accessed on March 3, 2016
NCPPA - National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity (NCPPA). About resources & reports. Accessed on November 9, 2015
PBIC-Sample plans - Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC). Sample plans. Accessed on March 2, 2016
PFP-Physical activity - Partnership for Prevention (PFP). Places for physical activity: Facilitating development of a community trail and promoting its use to increase physical activity among youth and adults: An action guide. Washington, DC: Partnership for Prevention (PFP); 2008. Accessed on March 3, 2016
Southworth 2005* - Southworth M. Designing the walkable city. Journal of Urban Planning and Development. 2005:131(4):246-57. Accessed on May 20, 2016
UNC-Bushell 2013 - Bushell MA, Poole BW, Zegeer CV, Rodriguez DA. Costs for pedestrian and bicyclist infrastructure improvements: A resource for researchers, engineers, planners, and the general public. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Highway Safety Research Center; 2013. Accessed on December 1, 2015
WFC-Resources - Walk Friendly Communities (WFC), Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center. Resources. Accessed on March 3, 2016

Citations - Evidence

Brownson 2006* - Brownson RC, Haire-Joshu D, Luke DA. Shaping the context of health: A review of environmental and policy approaches in the prevention of chronic diseases. Annual Review of Public Health. 2006;27:341–70. Accessed on December 1, 2015
CG-Physical activity - The Guide to Community Preventive Services (The Community Guide). Physical activity. Accessed on December 19, 2016
Fishman 2015* - Fishman E, Schepers P, Kamhuis CBM. Dutch cycling: Quantifying the health and related economic benefits. American Journal of Public Health. 2015;105(8):e13-e15. Accessed on March 3, 2016
Kerr 2013 - Kerr ZY, Rodriguez DA, Evenson KR, Aytur SA. Pedestrian and bicycle plans and the incidence of crash-related injuries. Accident Analysis and Prevention. 2013;50:1252–8. Accessed on November 23, 2015
Parker 2011* - Parker KM, Gustat J, Rice JC. Installation of bicycle lanes and increased ridership in an urban, mixed-income setting in New Orleans, Louisiana. Journal of Physical Activity & Health. 2011;8(Suppl 1):S98-S102. Accessed on March 14, 2016
Pucher 2010* - Pucher J, Dill J, Handy S. Infrastructure, programs, and policies to increase bicycling: an international review. Preventive Medicine. 2010;50(Suppl 1):S106-25. Accessed on November 9, 2015
RAND-Sorenson 2008 - Sorenson P, Wachs M, Min EY, et al. Moving Los Angeles: Short-term policy options for improving transportation. Santa Monica: RAND Corporation; 2008: Monograph Report 748. Accessed on May 24, 2016
Salon 2012* - Salon D, Boarnet MG, Handy S, Spears S, Tal G. How do local actions affect VMT? A critical review of the empirical evidence. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment. 2012;17(7):495–508. Accessed on November 24, 2015
UNC-Bushell 2013 - Bushell MA, Poole BW, Zegeer CV, Rodriguez DA. Costs for pedestrian and bicyclist infrastructure improvements: A resource for researchers, engineers, planners, and the general public. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Highway Safety Research Center; 2013. Accessed on December 1, 2015
Yang 2010 - Yang L, Sahlqvist S, McMinn A, Griffin SJ, Ogilvie D. Interventions to promote cycling: Systematic review. BMJ. 2010;341:c5293. Accessed on November 24, 2015

Citations - Implementation

PBIC-Sample plans - Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC). Sample plans. Accessed on March 2, 2016
WFC-State map - Walk Friendly Communities (WFC), Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center. Walk friendly communities state map. Accessed on March 3, 2016

Page Last Updated

July 28, 2015

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