Last week, U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) joined U.S. Sens. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), to introduce the Complete Streets Act, which is legislation aiming to improve the safety and accessibility of transportation routes across the nation.

“New Mexico’s rate of pedestrian-vehicle fatalities demands action,” Heinrich said. “The Complete Streets Act is an opportunity to not only make unprecedented investments in our state’s roadway safety, but pave the way for better, more accessible streets that can accommodate all forms of transportation. I’m proud to support this legislation to make roads safer and New Mexicans’ commutes easier.”

The Complete Streets Act would make roads safer and more accessible by ensuring that states direct a portion of their federal highway funding towards the creation of a Complete Streets Program. A “Complete Street” provides safe and accessible transportation options for children, seniors and people with disabilities by prioritizing infrastructure for pedestrians, bicyclists and public transit users.

Under the Complete Streets Act, eligible local and regional entities can use funds from their state’s Complete Streets Program for technical assistance and capital funding to build safe street projects such as sidewalks, bike lanes, crosswalks and bus stops. The legislation would also phase in a requirement for states to incorporate Complete Streets elements into all new construction and reconstruction.