Alexandria is designated as a Silver-level community due to their dedicated pedestrian staff time, development practices, and excellent Safe Routes to School program. Highlights of Alexandria’s application include:
- Alexandria has multiple staff members dedicating work towards pedestrian and bicycle efforts. With a full time pedestrian and bicycle coordinator, a part time pedestrian and bicycle planner, and multiple multimodal transportation planning and engineering staff members, Alexandria has devoted a good amount of time to improving walkability through pedestrian projects and programs.
- The sidewalk policies for Alexandria create a pedestrian network throughout the city that makes walking convenient and easy. All arterial streets and collector streets are required to provide sidewalks on both sides of the street, new private developments are required to construct or upgrade sidewalks, and Alexandria has a sidewalk retrofit policy in place to repair sidewalks as needed.
- A Complete Streets policy and Complete Streets Design Guidelines that were created in coordination with an update to the city’s Transportation Master Plan.
- Alexandria encourages walking in many ways through walking maps, the Citywide Wayfinding Program, historical walking tours, self-guided walking tours, and greenways and trail maps. Providing information about walking often creates higher rates of walking. Signs, maps, and tours show Alexandria’s support for a walking culture and are an excellent way to facilitate walking for a variety of purposes, including recreation, utilitarian, and transportation trips.
- The Safe Routes to School program in Alexandria is comprehensive and works to create an environment that promotes children walking to school. Eighty percent of Alexandria schools have an ongoing Safe Routes to School program and nearly every school in the city has a walking related event or program.
- The city has automated counters that collect 24-hour bike/ped volumes and conducts detailed pedestrian counts in the busy Old Town neighborhood. Alexandria works with neighboring Arlington to report the the city’s bicycle and pedestrian count data.
- Mixed-use and dense development is encouraged in Alexandria. In the past five years, 100 percent of development in the City has been infill. By providing retail on ground floors of residential buildings and density bonuses to developers producing walkable environments, Alexandria fosters a pedestrian friendly environment that increases walking trips made by residents.