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Congress and many State legislatures have made it considerably easier in recent years to fund nonmotorized projects and programs (for example, the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act and the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century), and a number of laws and regulations now mandate certain planning activities and design standards to guarantee the inclusion of bicyclists and pedestrians.
Despite these many advances, injury and fatality numbers for bicyclists and pedestrians remain stubbornly high, levels of bicycling and walking remain frustratingly low, and most communities continue to grow in ways that make travel by means other than the private automobile quite challenging.
The Design Guidance incorporates three key principles: The Policy Statement was drafted by the U. Department of Transportation in response to Section 1202 (b) of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) with the input and assistance of public agencies, professional associations and advocacy groups.
Research and practical experience in designing facilities for bicyclists and pedestrians has generated numerous national, State and local design manuals and resources.
An increasing number of professional planners and engineers are familiar with this material and are applying this knowledge in towns and cities across the country.
The 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act, building on an earlier law requiring curb ramps in new, altered, and existing sidewalks, added impetus to improving conditions for sidewalk users.
People with disabilities rely on the pedestrian and transit infrastructure, and the links between them, for access and mobility.
Public opinion surveys throughout the 1990s have demonstrated strong support for increased planning, funding and implementation of shared use paths, sidewalks and on-street facilities.At the same time, public agencies have become considerably better equipped to respond to this demand.