CINCINNATI — The city announced Monday the launch of a new website that will allow residents to provide direct and immediate feedback on traffic and pedestrian safety in their neighborhoods.
As part of its newly adopted "Vision Zero" initiative, Cincinnati will host multiple tools for collecting information on where and how it should target its traffic safety efforts, including citywide and school zone-specific surveys, as well as an interactive map where residents can pinpoint specific locations and identify their concern — "needs a crosswalk" or "people drive too fast here," for example.
The city began using the interactive map last year and will integrate it with the other new features starting Tuesday morning.
Later in the month, the website will launch an interactive crash map, providing real-time crash data as well as neighborhood crash statistics and a map of ongoing and upcoming pedestrian safety projects.
City Manager Patrick Duhaney announced the new website Monday afternoon in a memo to the mayor and City Council.
"The administration is committed to enhancing/increasing pedestrian safety across our city via Vision Zero — a strategy to eliminate all traffic-related deaths and serious injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all," he wrote.
Vision Zero is a nationwide initiative with dozens of city members that have committed to enacting policy promoting traffic safety.
In recent months, the city has pursued Vision Zero actions after City Councilman Greg Landsman — reacting to a record-setting year for pedestrian-involved crashes in Cincinnati in 2018 — filed a motion calling on the administration to explore multiple ways to reduce traffic casualties. In the Jan. 7 motion, Landsman and his colleagues asked the administration to:
- Appoint within the city's Department of Transportation and Engineering a pedestrian safety manager
- Shift more DOTE funds to the existing $500,000 pedestrian safety fund
- Explore the feasibility of implementing officer-operated speed enforcement cameras at speeding hot spots throughout the city
At a May 21 pedestrian safety summit, Landsman announced DOTE transportation planner Mel McVay would take over as pedestrian safety manager. Less than a month later, City Council approved an additional $250,000 in pedestrian safety spending for fiscal year 2020, after a January report indicated the city budget did not allocate enough money to address all of the city's pedestrian infrastructure needs.
As WCPO has previously reported, implementing any form of speed enforcement camera would require voter approval of an amendment to the City Charter.
In 2018, Cincinnati saw nearly 430 pedestrians involved in crashes, up steadily from fewer than 300 in 2013.