The state law requiring Oregon cities to reduce per-capita vehicle miles traveled (VMT) is often a scapegoat in community conversations.
However, I've never talked to anyone who says they want a longer commute to work, the grocery store, or their favorite restaurant. If we don't reduce Bend's VMT, it just means that on average, Bendites will have to travel further to get to their destinations. More people traveling further means even more traffic!
We need to plan ahead so that together, our land uses and transportation system can reduce the average number of miles we all have to travel to get to where we want to go. Reducing VMT relieves congestion, improves public health, increases safety, leads to greater economic development, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
Not convinced how land use and transportation are linked? This 5 minute video by OPB helpfully illustrates the connection.
For all these reasons, we are thankful that the State of Oregon requires our Transportation System Plan to show how the City will make progress towards decreasing per-capita VMT! The City is currently updating this plan, and will be holding several neighborhood meetings later this fall where you can tell the City what changes to our transportation system you want in your community. Stay updated through the City's Transportation System Plan website, and make sure you are signed up for LandWatch’s email updates.
Here are a few things you can do to help create a brighter transportation future for Bend:
Take the US 97 Parkway Survey
ODOT has been looking at transportation problems on the Parkway and working to identify cost-effective, achievable improvements that will balance statewide and regional needs, while also serving local drivers as well as people who walk and ride bicycles.
TAKE THE SURVEY
Give feedback online through October 7, 2018 by taking ODOT's survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CJQ6YKW Be sure to consider the ways in which the Parkway impacts people who need to get under/over it. Learn more here: bit.ly/US97BendParkway
Celebrate Cascade East Transit's 10-Year Anniversary
CET is offering customers FREE bus rides on October 2 and October 9 on Bend fixed-route and Community Connector buses (Dial-A-Ride service not included).
Join them at upcoming events to win prizes, engage in fun activities, and celebrate 10 years of safe and reliable transit service in Central Oregon! Light refreshments will be provided.
Tuesday, October 2 from 7:30 am - 10 am at Hawthorne Station (334 NE Hawthorne Ave, Bend)
Tuesday, October 9 from 2 pm - 4:30 pm at the new Redmond Transit Hub (777 SW Kalama Ave, Redmond)