Chapter 12.15


12.15.010    Purpose.

12.15.020    Design components.

12.15.030    Vision and purpose.

12.15.040    Core commitment.

12.15.050    Implementation and reporting.

12.15.060    Performance measures.

12.15.070    Exceptions.

12.15.080    Recommendations.

12.15.010 Purpose.

The City of Evansville will bring together relevant internal departments to work with other public agencies including the Vanderburgh County Highway Department, the Indiana Department of Transportation, elected officials, citizens, and stakeholder groups to:

(A) Design, operate, and maintain a transportation network that provides a connected network of facilities accommodating all modes of travel. Complete Streets will be integrated into policies, planning, and design of all types of public and private projects, including new construction, resurfacing, restoration, reconstruction, rehabilitation, repair, and maintenance of transportation facilities on streets and utility and redevelopment projects.

(B) Actively look for opportunities to repurpose rights-of-way to enhance and increase multimodal transportation opportunities, and connectivity for all forms of transportation.

(C) Focus on nonmotorized connectivity improvements to public transit services, schools, parks, civic uses, commercial uses, and healthy food retail establishments.

(D) Follow accepted or adopted design standards using the best and latest design standards available. Resources may include, but are not limited to:

(1) The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) Urban Bikeway Design Guide.

(2) The NACTO Urban Street Design Guide.

(3) The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities.

(4) The AASHTO Guide for the Planning, Design, and Operation of Pedestrian Facilities.

(5) The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Designing Walkable Urban Thoroughfares: A Context Sensitive Approach.

(6) The Indiana Department of Transportation’s Indiana Design Manual.

(7) Title VI/Environmental Justice, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

(8) Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG).

(9) ADA Guidelines.

(E) Consider other design standards that are balanced, flexible, sensitive to the needs of many users, and provide a comparable level of safety for all users present.

(F) Work to achieve Complete Streets through single elements incorporated into a particular project, or incrementally through a series of smaller improvements or maintenance activities over time. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 1, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.020 Design components.

Complete Streets are designed and operated to enable safe access for all multimodal users. Although there is no set formula for a complete street, it will typically have some or all of the following elements:

(A) Sidewalks;

(B) Dedicated bike lanes or shared lanes;

(C) High visibility crosswalks;

(D) Wide shoulders;

(E) Pedestrian refuge islands or medians;

(F) Bus pullouts;

(G) Street lighting;

(H) Audible pedestrian signals;

(I) Pedestrian countdown signals;

(J) HAWK Crossing System (High Intensity Activated Crosswalk);

(K) Sidewalk bump-outs;

(L) Transit stop accommodation;

(M) Road diets;

(N) Access management strategies;

(O) Roundabouts and neighborhood traffic circles;

(P) Traffic calming strategies;

(Q) Street trees and landscaping;

(R) Street furniture;

(S) Bike racks;

(T) Pedestrian and bicycle amenities. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 2, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.030 Vision and purpose.

The desired outcome of the Complete Streets Policy is to create an equitable, balanced, and effective transportation network where every roadway user can travel safely and comfortably and where sustainable transportation options are available to everyone. The goals of this Complete Streets Policy are to:

(A) Create a comprehensive, integrated, and connected transportation network that supports compact, sustainable development and provides livable communities.

(B) Promote safety, ease of use, and ease of transfer between modes for all users of the transportation network.

(C) Provide design flexibility for different types of streets, areas, and users. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 3, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.040 Core commitment.

The City of Evansville will work to develop a safe, reliable, efficient, integrated, and connected multimodal transportation network that will promote access, mobility, and health for all users, and will ensure that the safety and convenience of all users of the transportation network are accommodated, and will enable access to destinations such as home, school, work, recreation, and retail destinations. The City of Evansville recognizes:

(A) All users of various modes of transportation including, but not limited to, people with disabilities, pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists, transit and school bus riders, delivery and service personnel, freight haulers, emergency responders, and adjacent land users are legitimate users of roadways and deserve safe facilities. “All users” includes users of all ages, races, genders and disabilities, and income levels.

(B) All roadway projects, including new construction, maintenance, and reconstruction are to apply Complete Streets design principles. The City will design, construct, maintain, and operate all streets to provide for a comprehensive and integrated street network of facilities for people and users of all modes of transportation. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 4, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.050 Implementation and reporting.

The City of Evansville shall view Complete Streets as integral to everyday transportation decision-making practices and processes. To this end:

(A) The City’s relevant departments, agencies, or committees will incorporate Complete Streets principles into comprehensive plans, other planning documents, zoning codes, and other relevant manuals, checklists, rules, regulations, and programs as appropriate. Within one year, existing standards will be amended in EMC Title 18 in accordance with this policy.

(B) The City’s relevant departments, agencies, or committees will review current design standards, which apply to new roadway construction and development, including subdivision regulations, to ensure that they reflect the best available design standards and guidelines, and effectively implement Complete Streets. At a minimum, this review will result in amendments within one year to the City of Evansville’s Municipal Code and existing sidewalk standards.

(C) When available, the City shall encourage staff professional development and training on nonmotorized transportation issues through attending conferences, classes, seminars, and workshops.

(D) City staff shall identify all current and potential future sources of funding for street improvements and recommend improvements to the project selection criteria to support Complete Streets projects.

(E) The City shall include interdepartmental agencies such as Public Health, Housing, Planning, Engineering, Education, Transportation, Board of Public Works, City Council, Department of Metropolitan Development, and/or Mayoral office among City departments with an interest in the activities that occur within the public right-of-way in order to better use fiscal resources.

(F) The City shall continue working with local partners to raise awareness and educate the public on Complete Streets projects to ensure that all users of the transportation system understand and can safely utilize Complete Street elements.

(G) An annual report will be made to the City Council showing progress made in implementing this policy. The Board of Public Works, the Department of Metropolitan Development, and other relevant departments, agencies, or committees shall report on the annual increase or decrease for each performance measure contained in this chapter compared to the previous year(s). The City of Evansville will report progress in meeting each “Implementation and Reporting” measure and the achievements as established within EMC 12.15.080, Recommendations.

(H) While this chapter applies throughout Evansville, the City will put emphasis on providing Complete Streets implementation in traditionally underserved neighborhoods. This will help provide safe connections between these neighborhoods and major job centers, educational institutions, civic and community facilities, downtown and the downtown Metropolitan Evansville Transit System (METS) terminal and numerous bus stops for those most in need of alternate forms of transportation.

(I) The City shall create a process for equitable and inclusive community engagement for all phases from planning through implementation through the City Council, Board of Public Works, and Area Plan Commission public meetings and technical review committees such as Site Review and Subdivision Review. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 5, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.060 Performance measures.

The City shall measure the success of this Complete Streets Policy using, but not limited to, the following performance measures:

(A) Total miles of bike lanes, shared and dedicated, added;

(B) Linear feet of new pedestrian accommodation added or reconstructed;

(C) Number of high visibility crosswalk, intersection, sidewalk, crossing treatment;

(D) New ADA curb ramps installed along city streets pursuant to the Evansville ADA Transition Plan;

(E) Rate of crashes, injuries, and fatalities by mode of transportation;

(F) Percentage of transit stops accessible via sidewalks and curb ramps;

(G) Percentage of Complete Streets projects located in traditionally underserved neighborhoods with the greatest need for alternative forms of transportation, defined as Census Tracts with 25 percent or more of individuals below poverty, 20 percent or more of individuals with a disability, or 15 percent or more of households without a vehicle; and

(H) Number of approved and denied exceptions from the Evansville Complete Streets Policy.

Unless otherwise noted herein, within six months of adoption of the ordinance codified in this chapter, the city shall create individual numeric benchmarks for each of the performance measures included, as a means of tracking and measuring the annual performance of the ordinance. An annual report shall be posted online for each of the above measures. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 6, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.070 Exceptions.

Any exception to this policy, including for private projects, must be approved by the City Engineer and be documented with supporting data that indicates the basis for the decision. All proposed exceptions must be mode-specific, specifying which Complete Streets principles should be exempted. Infeasibility of one mode of transportation should not exempt a project from incorporating other Complete Streets principles. Such documentation shall be publicly available. Exceptions will be considered when:

(A) Roadways where specific users are prohibited by law, such as an interstate, freeway or pedestrian malls. An effort will be made, in these cases, for accommodations elsewhere.

(B) The Executive Director of Transportation and Services issues a documented exception concluding costs or impacts of accommodation are excessively disproportionate to the need or probable future use.

(C) The activities are ordinary maintenance activities designed to keep assets in serviceable condition, e.g., mowing, cleaning, sweeping, spot repair, and pavement preservation surface treatments (excluding mill and overlay).

(D) 20-or-more year average daily traffic projection is less than 1,000 vehicles per day.

(E) A reasonable and equivalent alternative already exists for certain users or is programmed in the capital improvement plan (CIP) or transportation improvement program (TIP) as a separate project. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 7, passed 10-27-21.]

12.15.080 Recommendations.

Complete Street design recommendations shall be incorporated into all publicly and privately funded transportation, street, and roadway projects, with exceptions approved as appropriate.

(A) All City-owned transportation facilities in the public right-of-way including, but not limited to, streets, bridges, and all other connecting pathways shall be designed, constructed, operated, and maintained so that users of all ages and abilities can travel safely and independently.

(B) All privately constructed and reconstructed roadways shall adhere to the City of Evansville’s Municipal Code, which is to be amended within one year to increase the minimum width of all new and reconstructed sidewalks; to establish wider minimums for sidewalks in commercial and other congested areas, and to limit waivers to these standards except where such a waiver would carry out the intent of this policy. All other design standards engineering manuals, regulations, or procedures of the City of Evansville shall be similarly updated on these subjects within the aforementioned one-year time frame. Updates shall include references to latest/updated improved design standards cited within this policy.

(C) Public and private projects on roadways determined to have a functional classification of minor collector or above shall adhere to this policy and the recommendations identified in local planning documents, e.g., the Evansville-Vanderburgh County Comprehensive Plan, local bicycle, pedestrian, and transit plans, and other relevant plans that include connectivity recommendations.

(D) Utility projects shall adhere to this policy.

(E) The City shall approach every transportation improvement and project phase as an opportunity to create safer, more accessible streets for all users. These phases include, but are not limited to, planning, programming, design, right-of-way acquisition, construction, construction engineering, reconstruction, operation, and maintenance. Other changes to transportation facilities on streets and rights-of-way, including capital improvements, re-channelization projects, and major maintenance, must also be included. [Ord. G-2021-17 § 8, passed 10-27-21.]