Create Networks

The following goals fall within the Create Networks domain.  The Sustainability Commission acknowledges that we may not be able to address all of these goals within the next five or ten years, but feels its important to outline these goals holistically.  We also acknowledge that this list may be incomplete; that the City may accomplish important items within the Smart Growth domain that aren't explicitly considered below.  Listing these goals specifically is only meant to guide stakeholders to impactful actions.

1. Create a Master Transportation Plan: Our Master Street Plan is the definitive policy and plan for our transportation network, determining how developers construct new streets and how the City resurfaces/reconstructs streets. We propose that the City work with an outside consultant to repeal the Master Street Plan and replace it with a Master Transportation Plan integrating the needs of all travel modes. 

2. Institute Community Master Transportation Plan Oversight:  The Complete Streets Ordinance, Section 5, calls for Complete Streets implementation on all new, reconstructed, or resurfaced road unless one of five exceptions is met.  This language should be expanded to include other elements of the Master Transportation Plan (e.g. trail installation) and a City Commission should oversee Master Trail Plan implementation and any exceptions granted. 

3. Adopt NACTO:  The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) has a set of design guidelines that may, at times, be more appropriate than the currently used American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) guidelines.  The City should officially become a NACTO City to justify the use of these urban-specific transportation guidelines.

4. Improve On-Street Bicycle Infrastructure

5. Improve Sidewalk NetworkFrom 2012-2017, the City has built or contracted the building of approximately 2 miles of sidewalk per year and repaired approximately 1.5 miles of sidewalk per year.  Sidewalk construction and repair is haphazard.

6. Install Wayfinding Signage:  Installing wayfinding signage helps pedestrians and cyclists navigate the city and legitimizes these traffic modes to all road users.  The downtown area has recently installed pedestrian wayfinding signage.  The City should install wayfinding signage for cyclists along installed on-street bicycle routes (e.g. MUTCD D1-2c) and along shared-use trails (e.g.  Arkansas River Trail) to better utilize them as bicycle transportation highways.

7. Install “Bicycles May Use Full Lane” signage:  Stop installing “Share the Road” (MUTCD W16-1P) signage.  It’s unclear to all road users whether the sign is intended to address motorists or cyclists and what specific behaviors are being encouraged/discouraged.  Instead install “Cyclists May Use Full Lane” (MUTCD R4-11) when appropriate.

8. Implement Road Diets:  A road diet is a way to change how people move about on a roadway (often by narrowing or reducing the number of vehicular traffic lanes) to increase safety for all road users and create space for bicycle and pedestrian traffic modes. 

9. Close the Arkansas River Trail Loop:  The Arkansas River Trail (ART) is the region’s premiere walking and biking recreational facility.  Bicycle transportation, and thereby sustainability, would be greatly served by completing the entire loop to a standard that serves users of all ages and abilities.

10. Southwest Trail:  The Southwest Trail will be a primarily recreational trail connecting Little Rock to Hot Springs, however within Little Rock it will very much serve a transportation function.  The City of Little Rock has been awarded Phase 1 of a three phase project to create the Southwest Trail from the ART to Central High (dubbed the Central High Corridor).

11. Midline:  The Midline is a proposed east-west bicycle/micromobility corridor approximately along the I-630 corridor.   By 2025, we should have a complete Midline with all sections separated from vehicular traffic at least by conventional bike lanes or mixed with vehicular traffic in bike boulevards. 

12. Tri-Creek Greenway: The Tri-Creek Greenway is an important addition to Little Rock's regional trail network and promotes equitable and sustainable transportation.

13. Southeast Trail: The Southeast Trail is currently a road route from the Clinton Library to Terry Lock and Dam.  The intention is to create a separated, shared-use trail facility providing the same connectivity.  This trail would connect downtown Little Rock to the Clinton National Airport and to the Little Rock Port.  By 2025, the City should have funding in place to complete the Southeast Trail from the Clinton Library to the Little Rock Airport.

14. Improve Pedestrian and LIT Network FundingOur transportation grid is currently built to move motor vehicles.  Substantial, sustained investment is required to create infrastructure to retrofit our grid to accommodate multiple transportation modes and decrease carbon emissions.