Safe Streets Lincoln
The mission of the Lincoln Transportation and Utilities (LTU) Traffic Engineering Division is to provide the safe and efficient movement of all modes of traffic in the City of Lincoln. Safe Streets Lincoln is a local initiative, which is part of the national Vision Zero campaign to eliminate traffic fatalities and severe injuries. The Safe Streets Lincoln initiative and national Vision Zero concept prioritize traffic safety and consider it a public health issue. The Vision Zero strategy acknowledges that many factors contribute to safe mobility – including street design, speeds, behaviors, technology, and policies – and sets clear goals to achieve the shared goal of zero fatalities and severe injuries. LTU has set a goal specifically for Lincoln to eliminate fatalities and reduce serious crashes by 60% by 2045.
1939 City of Lincoln campaign to decrease traffic fatalities
Pursuing the Safe Streets Lincoln and Vision Zero concept offers a positive and proactive shift in thinking that street fatalities and serious injuries are preventable. The table below provides an overview.
||Vision Zero Framework
||Preventing All Crashes
||Preventing Fatalities and Serious Injuries
||Deaths are Inevitable
||Deaths are Preventable
||Perfecting Human Behavior
||Designing a Road System that Accounts for Human Error
||Individual Road Users
||Shared Responsibility: Road Users and System Designers
To realize a Vision Zero program, the City of Lincoln will need to adopt US Department of Transportation’s Safe Systems Approach. This acknowledges both human mistakes and human vulnerability and designs a redundant system to protect everyone. The Safe Systems Approach is built around six key principles:
- Deaths and serious injuries are unacceptable
- Humans make mistakes
- Humans are vulnerable
- Responsibility is shared
- Safety is proactive
- Redundancy is crucial
The City’s Safe Streets Lincoln goal is to eliminate all roadway fatalities and reduce suspected serious injuries by 60% by 2045.
The City of Lincoln will advance our work on Vision Zero through a new grant from the United States Department of Transportation. The $400,000 award from the federal Safe Streets for All Grant Program (SS4A) will help promote the goals of the Department’s National Roadway Safety Strategy and Vision Zero program locally. We thank our federal partners for this investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The City is providing a local match of 20% ($100,00) for a maximum project of $500,000. This grant will be used for the planning efforts and creation of the City’s Safe Streets Lincoln Action Plan that will enhance the Vision Zero goal. Priority projects will be funded through additional funding sources, including future grant opportunities.
SS4A Grant Program (USDOT Website)
Next Steps: Creating the Safe Streets Lincoln Action Plan
To develop the Safe Streets Lincoln Action Plan, the following key deliverables will be created:
- The creation of a high-injury network and a crash hot-spot analysis
- Identify policies and processes to include or change
- Strategies and countermeasures selection
- Safety project(s) prioritization
- Evaluation and transparency
The following actionable steps are needed to get the key deliverables:
- Leadership commitment
- Establish a goal and timeline for eliminating roadway fatalities and serious injuries
- A safety analysis conducted on all Lincoln roadways and intersections
- Engagement and collaboration
- Equity considerations
The strategies and policy recommendations that come from the creation of the Safe Streets Lincoln Action Plan will contribute to safer streets in Lincoln.
For example, the implementation of high-visibility crosswalks is a proven safety countermeasure effective in reducing pedestrian injury crashes by up to 40%, according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The implementation of high-visibility crosswalks is already a tool in our arsenal that we will continue to leverage in roadway projects.
Proven Safety Countermeasures (FHWA Website)