The road to complete streets

In preparation for the Better Block BR event in April—where two blocks of Government Street will be converted to a “complete street” model for a weekend—organizers are hosting a workshop tonight to hear what types of infrastructure, businesses and activities you want to see along the route.

If you’re late to the game, April 13-14, two blocks of Government Street between Bedford Drive and Beverly Drive will be converted to just two lanes of traffic, marked off with temporary landscaping, bike lanes and clearly defined crosswalks to show residents what a more complete Government can look like. Pop-up shops, food trucks, performance areas and more will line the street to turn it into a neighborhood event.

Phillip LaFargue, director of communications for Center for Planning Excellence and an organizer for the event, says tonight’s workshop will be “a casual introduction of the project to the general public, as well as an opportunity for residents, business owners and anyone who is interested in improving Government Street to share their ideas for how the corridor can live up to its potential.”

Better Block team members will be on hand to discuss volunteer opportunities and gather ideas. LaFargue says the workshop will also include information stations and visual preference surveys—basically, a way for you to rate examples of improvements to the street you think would work best. I found some great before-and-after shots of street improvements on this Flickr site that can give you an idea of what Government could look like one day. Some of those photos were taken by Dan Burden, executive director of the Walkable and Livable Communities Institute, who performed a walking audit of Government last April (read our story about it here).

The Better Block BR public workshop is 6 p.m.-8 p.m. tonight at Ingleside Methodist Church, 4264 Capital Heights Ave. For more details, go to facebook.com/BetterBlockBR.

Photo above is of a street in Seattle after an improvement. Photo courtesy Complete Streets.