D.C.'s Official Pedestrian Advisory Body

Appointed by the D.C. Council to advise the Mayor, the D.C. Council, DDOT and other agencies.

Next Meeting: July 8th, 2024

Hear from city officials, help us develop policy recommendations, and learn about our work to upgrade the city's streetscape.

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Bowser keeps sidewalk funding

At a hearing on Mayor Muriel Bowser’s proposed FY 2016 budget, the D.C. Pedestrian Advisory Council (PAC) expressed cautious optimism that pedestrians will indeed be prioritized among transportation modes in the year ahead. Sidewalk repairs and corridor improvements would both get funding through the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) budget, which the D.C. Council will vote on in May. The April 21 hearing on the budget was held by the D.C. Council Committee on Transportation and the Environment, chaired by Councilmember Mary Cheh. Councilmembers Charles Allen and Kenyon McDuffie also attended and joined Cheh in asking DDOT Director Leif Dormsjo pointed questions about transportation infrastructure and safety in their wards and throughout the District.

The PAC’s testimony at the hearing praised sidewalk funding but questioned the sufficiency of funding for other types of infrastructure work, such as making intersections and crosswalks safer for pedestrians. (Click here to read the PAC’s testimony.) Highlights of the budget are below:

Sidewalks – Through a couple different funds, there would be nearly $18 million in the FY 2016 budget to repair uneven sidewalks and build sidewalk segments where they are missing.

Vision Zero – The Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Fund would be replaced by the Vision Zero Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Fund, which would be furnished with automated traffic enforcement fines paid by motorists and would be bigger -- stocked with $500,000 for FY 2016. DDOT is leading the District’s Vision Zero initiative, Dormsjo said at the hearing. Vision Zero is an approach to road safety that aims to prevent all traffic-related fatalities and serious injuries.

Safer corridors – The Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Enhancement fund would have about $2 million in FY 2016 for corridor design and implementation.

The proposed budget is available on the website of the D.C. Chief Financial Officer.

PAC seeks multi-agency cooperation for improving pedestrian safety

Leaders at multiple agencies must work together if the District is going to seriously engage in a Vision Zero approach to improving the safety of road users, D.C. Pedestrian Advisory Council (PAC) Co-Chair Tony Goodman urged the D.C. Council Committee on Transportation and the Environment. Goodman’s comments were part of his testimony at the PAC’s March 6 annual oversight hearing.

“A meaningful Vision Zero approach to road safety, as practiced in other cities and countries around the world must include agencies such as the Department of Health, D.C. Office on Aging, the Department of General Services, and others,” Goodman testified. “Through quality design, infrastructure improvements, consistent enforcement, and wider public education we can move toward safer streets and zero fatalities.” Goodman reported to the committee that 10 pedestrians were killed in 2014. According to the Districtof Columbia Strategic Highway Safety Plan released in October 2014, there were 12 pedestrian fatalities in 2013 and 8 in 2012. More than 300 pedestrians are seriously injured in the District each year, according to the report.

In addition to encouraging cooperation for an impactful Vision Zero campaign, the PAC will be pushing District agencies to move forward on other initiatives in the year ahead, Goodman reported at the oversight hearing. Making sidewalk repairs, increasing automated and officer enforcement of laws affecting pedestrians, publicizing crash data, and improving intersections are some of the issues the PAC will be monitoring, Goodman said.