The Michigan Complete Streets Coalition is excited to announce that a package of Complete Streets bills (HB 6151 & HB 6152) were introduced last night in the Michigan House.   Both bills were referred to the Transportation Committee.

HB 6151, states that “the Department [MDOT], local road agencies, and municipalities that receive appropriations under this act [Act 51] shall adopt complete streets policies” within two years.

The proposed legislation would require the “adequate accommodation, in all phases of project planning, development, construction, maintenance, and operation of all users of the transportation system, including, but not limited to, pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit users, children, older individuals, motorists and individuals with disabilities.”

The bill also creates a Complete Streets Advisory Council at the state level to “assist local road agencies and municipalities with implementation of Complete Streets Policies.”

The Coalition worked closely with bill sponsors Representative Jon Switalski and House Transportation Chair Pam Byrnes in crafting the bill language.  The Coalition also helped to develop specific exceptions in line with the National Complete Streets Coalition’s recommendations that take into consideration exorbitant cost (20% of the total project cost) as well as “urban, suburban or rural context in which a project is located.”

Such exemptions would have to be approved by a primary transportation planning authority such as MDOT, a metropolitan planning organization, or the regional, county or city agency responsible for planning and approving the project.

The companion bill, HB 6152, would update Michigan’s Planning Enabling Act by adding non-motorized transportation, Complete Streets and traffic calming as required elements of a municipal master plan.

We encourage individuals and organizations to contact their State Representatives (see sample letter below) in support of both bills.