WHEREAS, communities that have invested in pedestrian and bicycle projects have benefited from improved quality of life, a healthier population, greater local real estate values, more local travel choices, and reduced air pollution; and
WHEREAS, federal investments in pedestrian and bicycle programs are highly cost-effective relative to road-building projects, reduce accidents by providing safe and convenient places to walk and bicycle, and decrease U.S. dependence on foreign oil; and
WHEREAS, according the National Household Travel Survey in 2009, 12.1% of all trips in the United States were made by biking or walking, including rural areas; and
WHEREAS, according to the 2008 National Survey of Bicyclist and Pedestrian Attitudes and Behavior, 84% of Americans polled agreed, strongly or somewhat, that bicycling is “a great form of exercise” for them; and
WHEREAS, the American Community Survey reports that between 2000 and 2008, the number of people in the U.S. who commuted to work via bicycle increased by 43%; and between 2000 and 2010, the number of people in the largest 70 cities in the U.S. who commuted to work via bicycle increased by 63%; and
WHEREAS, as part of the 2005 federal transportation bill SAFETEA-LU, the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP) funded four communities with $25 million each spread over four years to promote walking and biking; and
WHEREAS, there is a concerted effort being made by national bicycle and pedestrian advocates to elevate trails, walking, and biking nationally by greatly increasing the federal investment in pedestrian and bicycle projects through programs based on the success of the NTPP;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The United States Conference of Mayors urges Congress to protect and increase funding for bicycle and pedestrian programs in the next transportation reauthorization law through transportation enhancements, an expanded NTPP, support for Safe Routes to School, the Transportation Community Systems Preservation Progam (TCSP), expanding the Recreational Trails program and other federal transportation programs.