Planning & Development
City of Houston Joins USDOT Allies in Action, Reinforcing Commitment to Roadway Safety
April 25, 2023 -- The U.S. Department of Transportation announced that the City of Houston is among more than 30 organizations that have joined the Allies in Action, pledging to support the Department’s National Roadway Safety Strategy. These organizations are taking action to reverse the crisis that is killing more than 40,000 people on American roads each year.
“The City of Houston enthusiastically joins the call to action, which echoes our shared mobility safety goals and aligns with the City of Houston’s Vision Zero commitment to end fatalities and serious injuries on Houston streets by 2030,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner.
“Since the passing of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, Houston has received nearly $50 million for safer streets. Houston will continue to collaborate with US DOT to prioritize safety over speed and people over cars,” Turner said.
USDOT’s Allies in Action have committed to taking specific, tangible steps to actively reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on America’s roads and streets, expand the adoption of a Safe System Approach and a Zero Fatalities vision across the nation, and transform how we as a nation think about road safety. Allies in Action span multiple sectors and include health and safety advocates, the private sector, municipal and law enforcement organizations, and more.
This announcement follows news last week that the dramatic increase in roadway fatalities seen during the pandemic has begun to level out but remains far too high with an estimated 42,795 people dying in motor vehicle traffic crashes across the country in 2022. This represents a small decrease of about 0.3% as compared to the 42,939 fatalities reported nationwide for 2021.
See the full list and watch a message from U.S. Transportation Secretary Buttigieg here.
The City of Houston has the following initiatives planned in 2023 based on the Houston Vision Zero Action Plan:
- Update the Cityside High Injury Network based on data from 2019-2022.
- Create a public-facing dashboard with Vision Zero metrics, updated quarterly.
- Shift citywide Traffic Impact Analysis standards from Vehicle Level of Service to Multimodal Service Standards.
- Prepare a Citywide Freight Network.
- Initiate two safety projects funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure laws: Telephone Road (RAISE) and Bissonnet Corridor (Safe Streets and Roads for All).
- Participate in Houston Public Library’s Summer Camp program to connect with 100 Grade 3-12 students about Vision Zero.
- Collaborate with AAA Texas on hosting a Distracted Drivers Awareness event.
USDOT plans to convene organizations that have joined the call to action in the early summer to discuss opportunities to advance the goals of the NRSS, share best practices, and catalyze efforts across the various engaged sectors.
The Department launched the National Roadway Safety Strategy in January 2022 after decades of steady declines, traffic deaths began rising again in 2010 and then surged during the early days of the pandemic in 2020. The NRSS outlines a concrete set of actions the Department has committed to and adopts the five-pronged approach that includes Safer People, Safer Vehicles, Safer Speeds, Safer Roads, and Better Post-Crash Care, all to work towards a goal of zero fatalities. The Department won’t achieve zero deaths on our roadways alone, which is why involving stakeholders across the country, at every level of government, philanthropy, advocacy and the private sector, is key.
The Department also announced recently that more than $1 billion is now available from the new Safe Streets and Roads for All discretionary grant program, funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. These competitive grants will help cities, counties, Tribes and metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) create safety plans, demonstrate effective strategies, and carry out infrastructure projects that prevent deaths and serious injuries on our nation’s roadways, from putting in high-visibility crosswalks to redesigning intersections.