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Mayor signs Complete Streets policy

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(photo by Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)
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As board president Lewis Reed, Alderman Shane Cohn, and Trailnet's Ann Mack look on, Mayor Francis Slay signs the Complete Streets bill

By Rachel Lippmann, St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis – The city of St. Louis has become the third in Missouri to officially adopt the "Complete Streets" policy.

Mayor Francis Slay signed the legislation Thursday. The non-binding guidelines encourage road engineers to include things like bike lanes and streetscapes when designing new roads.

The Complete Streets policy will help the city promote an active and healthy lifestyle, said Shane Cohn, the sponsor, who calls biking a personal passion. But he cautioned residents about expecting too much from the policy too soon.

"This is not something that is going to transform St. Louis overnight," he said. "As projects and as funding becomes available for those projects we will start to transform the community."

Cohn worked with the advocacy group Trailnet to draft the St. Louis legislation. Executive director Ann Mack said the cost of complying with Complete Streets is minimal.

"I can't give a dollar figure because it's not clear cut," she said. "If you're going to go with striping it's going to be one set. If you're going to go with signing, it's going to be another, but it is a negligible part of any road project."

DeSoto and Ferguson have officially adopted Complete Streets guidelines, and Columbia made substantial revisions to its master plan to make the city more friendly to bikers and pedestrians.

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