A road diet is a way to change how people move on a roadway to improve safety, better serve all of the people who use it, and improve the surrounding community (Fig. 1). The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration promotes road diets because they provide substantial safety and multimodal benefits.
Figure 1. A "road diet" can refer to a variety of lane reconfigurations to improve street function and safety.
The City of Little Rock has already done several road diets, including 12th St., Main St., Chester St., Daisy Bates to address the concerns of the communities in those areas. Are you happy with the safety and service of the streets in your community? What concerns do you have? A road diet may be one way to address your concerns. If you're interested, please watch the videos (Figs. 1 & 2), read "Road Diets and Safety" below, and review the resources below.
Figure 2. Why do a road diet? This video illustrates some road diet benefits from different users' perspectives. Click for a longer version.
Road Diet Topics
“We now know that there is no reason for any urban street in America to have four lanes. It cannot be justified. It took a while to figure it out, but the data are clear. When a four-lane street is converted to a three lane street, in which the center lane is reserved for left turns, the capacity of the street does not drop.” Jeff Speck, Walkable City Rules, 2018
Road Diets in Little Rock
US DOT FHWA's Road Diet Webpage
This webpage offers many road diet resources, their benefits, and how to identify good candidates for road diet streets.
US DOT FHWA's Road Diet Informational Guide
This guide is a comprehensive consideration of road diets, their benefits, and how and when to implement them.
US DOT FHWA's Road Diet Case Studies
This report considers specific streets on which road diets were implemented, the concerns the road diets were meant to address, and what the outcomes were in those communities.
US DOT FHWA's Summary of Road Diet Peer Exchange
This is a summary of the materials presented in a two day road diet peer exchange conference about the successes and challenges of road diet projects that have been installed around the country. Little Rock's Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator attended this conference.
US DOT FHWA Road Diet Flyers
The following flyers address specific road diet subjects: