Dwight Hudson for Metro Council District 9


88 January 24, 2016 17.35

4 Strategies for improving traffic:

Regional Focus: For far too long funding decisions for traffic projects have been made with politics in mind rather than priorities. That’s got to change. Leaders at all levels of government must begin to work and collaborate with their regional counterparts in order to get traffic flowing throughout the area. With 60% of our local workers commuting from other parishes it is clear that a comprehensive approach is required.

Data Driven Decision Making: In 2016 we are blessed to have a wealth of information at our finger tips to assist in the decision making process. Traffic data is being collected and used by a number of users and sources but all too often this data is not shared or is not stored in a way that makes it useful to other decision makers in the parish and region. The 2014 IBM “Smarter Cities Challenge Report” outlines much needed reforms that will allow the different stake holders and decision makers in the region the ability to work with one another in sharing and using this data. The City Parish must do its part to help institute these important reforms. Doing so will help facilitate regional leaders at the state level to coalesce around vital projects and attract federal dollars which increasing rely on data to back up funding requests.

Committed to “Complete Streets”: Across America citizens are calling for their communities to take a more holistic approach to designing transportation infrastructure by making considerations for pedestrians, bike paths and transit. The “Complete Streets” policy was adopted in late 2014 and has put East Baton Rouge Parish in a position to make our streets serve all modes of transportation. This multi modal approach must be continued to ensure that our transportation infrastructure serves the entire parish.

Engaging the private sector: Communities all over the country are looking for ways to fund critical road projects while shifting the cost burden away from the municipality or state government. Public Private Partnerships have proven to be effective in some instances and warrant consideration for solving East Baton Rouge’s traffic problem.