Complete streets

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Complete Streets are policies and physical environments that promote different modes of transportation to travel by foot, bicycle, transit, wheelchairs, and automobiles. Complete Streets also refers to the goal of having infrastructure changes in city planning, design funding, and maintenance of streets. Complete streets can be realized though policy changes rising from input at all levels including but not limited to: individuals, community stakeholders, transportation agencies, and elected officials [1] Livable Streets and Shared Streets are similar to Complete Streets, but prioritize the individual's life and sharing roads, respectively.

Complete Streets

The Complete Streets concept values the importance of designing and operating streets in order to provide safe and convenient access for all users [2]. According to Burden and Littman, this shifts the priority from transportation mobility to accessibility to desired good, services, and activities [3]. Complete Streets, therefore, aims to balance land use, infrastructure, and transportation all while keeping the individual's needs in mind.

Design Manuals

The Los Angeles Department of City Planning's Complete Streets Manual has 15 sections for designing Complete Streets:

  1. 1

Street Identification This includes all types of vehicle-oriented roads and other forms including: shared streets, pedestrian walkways, stormwater greenway, alleys, public stairways.

  1. 2

Sample Cross Sections

Livable streets and Shared Streets

Transit's role in complete streets


  2. Complete Streets Manual. Publication no. CPC-2013.910.GPA.SP.CA.MSC. Los Angeles: Department of City Planning, 2014. Print.
  3. Burden, Dan, and Todd Litman. "America needs complete streets." ITE Journal 81.4 (2011): 36-43