The Metro Board has been developing guidelines on how to spend Measure M funding in your city and across the County. Measure M is a county-wide ballot initiative passed last November to fund transportation projects. Thursday, June 22, the Metro Board is scheduled to adopt the Measure M Guidelines.
LACBC, in partnership with many other transportation, safety, equity, and housing advocates, has been urging the Metro Board to support key amendments to improve the proposed guidelines. These include (but not limited to):
Ensure that highway subfunds can be used for planning and building bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.
Require that Measure M funds align with state climate goals, help achieve vehicle miles traveled reduction targets, reduce burdens on disadvantaged communities, and improve safety–especially for the most vulnerable road users.
Good news! Metro Board Members Garcia, Bonin, Solis, and Hahn have recently proposed a motion that does just that! If passed, this motion would allow “Operational Improvements” for Highway Subfund Projects to include active transportation, Complete Streets, and Innovative Mobility Transportation projects. It also replaces references to Level of Service (LOS) with Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT).
VMT or LOS? Why does this matter?
Highway program funding can fund both streets and freeways and the motion that is being proposed does not change this. However, changing from LOS to VMT gives local jurisdictions flexibility to use this funding by considering the mobility needs and capacity of all people moving through a corridor, which helps improve both the safety of all users and the environment.
LOS is primarily an auto-focused metric for evaluating streets based on how to move as many cars as possible through a corridor. Sometimes this comes at the expense of safety and health and limits the ability to design the streets so that other forms of mobility such as walking, biking, and taking public transit are safe or accessible.
VMT is a metric that aims to reduce the amount of vehicle miles traveled on our streets by allowing the redesign of the streets to include better and safe options for people to choose other forms of transportation that are not just limited to the automobile. VMT helps ensure and optimize the safe movement of all people–whether they are traveling by foot, transit, bicycle or car. Using VMT will help prioritize multimodal projects, help reduce regional traffic, improve air quality, and allow planners to consider the overall capacity of a corridor to move people more efficiently rather than just cars.
LACBC supports and applauds the forward thinking of these Board members! But we need your help to show up and speak out for safer streets!
Want to take action? Share your support of this proposed motion by:
Joining us TOMORROW Thursday June 22nd, at 9:00 AM
Meet at 1 Gateway Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90012; go to the front desk and let them know you will attend the Board meeting on the 3rd floor
When you get to the Board room, fill out a blue comment card (before going through security) and hand it in so you can be called to speak
The Guidelines will be Item 38 on the agenda
If you have questions, get lost, or get confused, email Monique Lopez, who will be at the meeting: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sending an email to the Metro Board before Thursday to show your support.
See below for a draft email you can send to Metro Board!
Subj: Measure M Guidelines Revisions – Motion 38.3
Dear Metro Board Members,
As a ___________ (e.g. bike rider, pedestrian, transit user, student, parent, etc.), I strongly encourage the the Metro Board to support the Motion 38.3 proposed by Board Members Garcia, Bonin, Solis, and Hahn.
I support Motion 38.3 because I care about the safety of all people on the road–whether they are traveling by foot, transit, bicycle or car. I also care deeply about the quality of our air, the health and safety of our residents, and the resiliency of our environment. This motion presents an opportunity to change the way we plan our communities and our streets by prioritizing the needs not just of cars, but of people.
Please ensure that active transportation, safety, and equity are prioritized in spending Measure M local return dollars.
(Your name) (Your address)