With a focus on improving and enhancing walking in northern and central New Jersey, the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) conducts a series of half-day “Walkable Community” workshops in communities around the region.
The workshops train participants to identify barriers to walking and ways to improve pedestrian safety in each workshop community. Participants also learn how to inform and instruct residents, transportation professionals, and others about improving walkability.
The workshops include
- Initial briefing by local stakeholders
- Presentation by the consultants on “best practices” of walkable communities in other locations
- Guided walking audit of a study area identified by the local host community
- Small group session to generate recommendations for improvements
Each workshop produces a prioritized list of specific improvements aimed at increasing safety and accessibility for pedestrians. These lists can be used by local and county governments as a catalyst for implementing the improvements and to develop “problem statements” that can be submitted to the NJTPA for consideration of project funding.
Workshop locations are selected by NJTPA staff in consultation with county and city officials throughout the region. Staff from each participating workshop location coordinates with local officials to invite stakeholders including local elected leaders, planners and engineers, interested business owners, and residents.