Promising Signs from New Haven’s New Mayor

(L to R) New Haven's new director of economic development Matthew Nemerson, new director of Traffic, Transportation and Parking Doug Hausladen, and Mayor Toni Harp.

(L to R) New Haven’s new economic development administrator Matthew Nemerson, new transportation director Doug Hausladen, and Mayor Toni Harp. | Photo: New Haven Independent

In the last week, New Haven Mayor Toni Harp has given promising answers to many of the questions that transportation advocates have been asking. Last week, the administration announced it would study transit improvements within New Haven, and earlier this week, Mayor Harp named a new city transportation director, Doug Hausladen, who has a strong record on traffic safety and complete streets.

Hausladen, who was elected a city alder in 2011, has a history of sustainable transportation activism. As a private citizen, Hausladen pushed for a state complete streets law and helped win pedestrian safety improvements at a downtown intersection. As an alder, he pushed for improvements to Route 34 and for legislation to allow municipalities to use cameras to enforce red-light running, which would improve safety in New Haven (73 pedestrians were killed or injured in the city in 2010 alone).

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Connecticut 2013: Looking Back on the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

CT-GBE-2013There was plenty to be happy about in Connecticut last year, with progress on the CTfastrak bus rapid transit corridor, lots of new bike infrastructure and the election of livable streets champions in cities across The Nutmeg State.

But as there almost always is, there was room for improvement in 2013. Connecticut’s elected officials boosted transit fares, failed to vote on a key piece of safety legislation and continued to use limited highway dollars for capacity expansion instead of sorely-needed road and bridge maintenance.

The Good

Positive outlook for CTfastrak, now under construction — Construction is underway on Central Connecticut’s bus rapid transit system, and much of the negativity surrounding the project appears to have given way to excitement. And on top of that, the busway has proven to be a catalyst for transit oriented development.

Never-before seen in Connecticut bike infrastructure on the way — Under the leadership of Transportation, Traffic and Parking Director Jim Travers, the City of New Haven introduced the City’s first bike corral. New Haven will also be home to Connecticut’s first cycle track, which suggests a changing mindset at the Connecticut Department of Transportation. On top of that, (soon to be painted) green lanes will be installed in Hartford.

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Outside the Box Thinking Needed to Address New Haven Line Transit Crisis

Source: NYTimes.com Connecticut officials must think outside the box to address the current crisis facing New Haven Line commuters.

The transit crisis facing the New Haven Line is now in its sixth day, and ConnDOT and the MTA have been doing what they [...]

Unprecedented Bicycle Infrastructure Project Planned for New Haven Suggests a Changing Mindset at ConnDOT

As part of the Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge (or “Q” Bridge) project, a protected cycle track and off-road path will be built on Water Street, across the Tomlinson Bridge, and onto Forbes Avenue. This is a concept drawing of Water Street.

An agreement between the City of New Haven and the Connecticut Department [...]

Elm City Cycling Updates New Haven’s Bike Maps

The City of New Haven last issued a bike map nearly a decade ago, when average gas prices were less than $2.00 a gallon, and a little known State Senator named Barack Obama had just won a Senate seat to represent the State of Illinois.

In 2004:

New Haven’s outdated 2004 bike map. [...]

New Haven Open to Additional Traffic Calming as Route 34 Project Advances

New Haven’s plans for Downtown Crossing have been criticized for replacing the highway with boulevards that will be too wide and dangerous to cross. The design of Phase 1 of the project includes roads with as many as 5 traffic lanes at intersections. Team members expressed a willingness to revisit this and other [...]

Livable Streets Advance Thanks to CT Advocates, Municipalities

Source: Sacramento Press. New Haven advocates are trying to 'crowd-fund' a bike corral like this one.

Some good news for bicycle and livable community advocates has been coming out of Connecticut over the past few weeks:

Thanks to the efforts of the Fairfield Bike-Walk Coalition, the Town of Fairfield will be getting its [...]

A Crossroads for New Haven’s Downtown Crossing

The City of New Haven’s plan to replace the Route 34 stub highway with mixed-use urban development took a big step forward last week, after the Board of Aldermen unanimously approved zoning changes and a land disposition agreement that will allow Phase 1 of the Downtown Crossing project to move forward. But local citizens and [...]

New Haven Applies for Bike Share Grant

Capital Bikeshare in Washington, D.C. has a 97% farebox recovery ratio; if New Haven gets funding for its own, it expects roughly the same | Photo: flickr/zcopley

At Tri-State’s April 11 Sustainable Streets forum, New Haven Director of Transportation, Traffic, and Parking Jim Travers told attendees that his city was looking into a [...]

New Haveners Worry Route 34 Removal Will Be Less Than Transformative

New Haven's plan to remove Route 34 downtown will open up space for development, and aims to improve walking and biking connections. But locals worry the results won't actually be friendly to cyclists and pedestrians.

The removal of Route 34, a 1.1-mile stub of a highway that displaced hundreds of Connecticut families, homes, [...]