Six Vision Zero town hall meetings begin this week
COLUMBIA - The city is hosting six Vision Zero town hall meetings, beginning on Monday night, to discuss Vision Zero and traffic safety.
The Vision Zero initiative launched in 2016 in Columbia. The goal of Vision Zero is to eliminate traffic related deaths and serious injuries on Columbia roadways by 2030.
Vision Zero was established in many large cities like New York City and Seattle. In each city, town hall meetings were used as a way to engage with the public, hear their input and to educate about the Vision Zero plan.
Ian Thomas, Fourth ward councilman and host of Monday’s town hall meeting, said holding these forums is critical to the early stages of planning.
“One of the basic features in Vision Zero programs across the country is a lot of community involvement in the planning, in the project, in the policy that the city council will adopt, in order to improve traffic safety,” Thomas said.
Annette Triplett, executive director of the PedNet Coalition, said the city is hoping to receive a personal level of public input.
“Part of what we’re looking for in terms of public input is that street level, safety information. Where are the hotspots? Where are people seeing near misses that could result in crashes in the future if something is not done to address it?” Triplett said.
“We want to hear from residents what they think are the strategies that we should be adopting,” Thomas said.
The town hall meetings will be hosted by a City Council member of each of the six wards, and food and childcare will be provided.
Residents are encouraged to RSVP here, to the meeting they plan to attend.
The meetings are listed below:
- Jan. 22, 6 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by fourth ward councilman, Ian Thomas, Columbia Public Library, 100 West Broadway
- Jan. 23, 6 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by third ward councilman, Karl Skala, Blue Ridge Elementary, 3700 Woodland Dr.
- Jan. 25, 6 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by first ward councilman, Clyde Ruffin, Boone County Public Health and Human Services, 1005 West Worley St.
- Jan. 29, 6 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by second ward councilman, Michael Trapp, Lange Middle School, 2201 Smiley Lane
- Jan. 30, 6 to 8 p.m., hosted by sixth ward councilwoman, Betsy Peters, Shepard Boulevard Elementary School, 2616 Shepard Blvd.
- Jan. 31, 6 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by fifth ward councilman Matt Pitzer, Gentry Middle School, 4200 Bethel St.