Active transportation planning and design can be broken down into 5 Es: Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, Evaluation, and Engineering. A sixth E, Equity, should also be prioritized throughout.
ENGINEERING is the design and construction of improvements to the built environment.
EDUCATION is the array of programs that teach people of all ages how to walk and bike safely.
ENCOURAGEMENT programs get people excited about walking and biking, either by providing incentives for developing walking and biking habits or by creating the venue for walking and biking, like hosting a “fun run” or 5k race.
ENFORCEMENT programs help deter unsafe behaviors by people using all travel modes. Examples include Trail Ranger programs in which volunteers draw attention to inappropriate or unsafe activities on trails; or speed enforcement zones monitored by police to deter dangerous driving and share information about the rules of the road.
EVALUATION programs include performance measures, such as pedestrian and bicyclist counts, miles of projects completed, community satisfaction surveys, and other activities that help communities track and celebrate progress around active transportation. One evaluation method is to conduct pedestrian and bicycle counts before and after a new piece of active transportation infrastructure is installed to measure its effect on local mobility and make the case for additional investments. Evaluation outcomes inform future plan revisions and updates, which may be made every 5 to 10 years.
EQUITY programs help improve access to safe walking and biking opportunities for underserved communities. Equity initiatives must make an intentional effort to include voices and perspectives that are often excluded from the planning discourse and prioritize low-income and communities of color when planning infrastructure investments