The Honorable Arnold Schwarzenegger
Governor, State of California
California State Capitol Building
Sacramento, CA 95814
Re: Support: AB 1358 (Leno)
I am writing to encourage you to lend your support to the Complete Streets legislation (AB 1358) which has just cleared the state assembly. Changing the built environment within our cities to accommodate non-automotive modes of transportation is a crucial step that California must take in reducing our per-capita greenhouse gas emissions, as well as helping our citizens to reduce their dependence on increasingly expensive foreign petroleum products.
As gas prices have risen, more people than ever in California are choosing to leave their cars behind, and explore cycling, walking, and public transportation options. Unfortunately, all too often they discover that their cities have been designed and built with little consideration for those who are not driving. I know, because I have been commuting by bicycle in southern California since 1993.
Complete streets aren’t just about cyclists though, they’re better for the elderly, and for children too, as well as those for whom car ownership, maintenance, and insurance are a significant economic burden.
I was recently disappointed when the LA Metro board refused to commit to spending a portion of the money to be raised by the proposed sales tax increase (measure R on the ballot this fall) on pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure. Per dollar invested, pedestrian and cycling infrastructure moves more people to and from their destination than any other mode of transport. The climate and topography of southern California are gentle, and ideal for cycling and walking, but apparently, our city planners will not invest in that infrastructure unless they have been mandated to do so by the state. I hope you will help create that mandate by signing AB 1358 into law when it crosses your desk.
Zane A. Selvans