“Simply put, a complete street is a street that has been designed with every road user in mind.”
Ryan McGreal, Editor, Raise the Hammer
The support base for the advancement of complete streets in Hamilton is growing and gaining strength.
In most quarters, discussions have turned to the practical question: How do we pay for complete streets given the fiscal challenges of local government? This question has been taken up by a number of local organizations, including the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.
Earlier this year, the Chamber/Renew Hamilton partnered with the W Booth School of Engineering Practice at McMaster University to co-lead a study on global best practices on alternative funding models for complete streets.
Two graduate students attending the W Booth School were selected to carryout the study under the supervision of Robert Fleisig, PhD, P Eng.
Kamran Khurshid and Catherine Burrows (pictured) – who have since graduated from the W Booth School – reported on their preliminary findings at a community event hosted by the Hamilton Sustainability Professionals Network on October 1 at the Art Gallery of Hamilton.
They shared several community-specific case studies – from Calgary and Memphis to Denver and San Francisco, to name a few – to illustrate innovative approaches to funding the design, construction and maintenance of complete streets. Key funding solutions (beyond conventional taxation) cited by the researchers include crowdfunding, mini bonds, public-private partnerships, gifts in kind and special street funds.
This study, which was funded in part by McMaster University through its Network for Community-Campus Partnerships, will help inform a number of local complete streets initiatives in Hamilton.
Special thanks to research adviser, Chris Higgins, McMaster Institute for Transportation and Logistics.
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