"Complete streets" is the planning, scoping, design, implementation, operation, and maintenance of roads in order to reasonably address the safety and accessibility needs of users of all ages and abilities. Complete streets considers the needs of motorists, pedestrians, transit users and vehicles, bicyclists, and commercial and emergency vehicles moving along and across roads, intersections, and crossings in a manner that is sensitive to the local context and recognizes that the needs vary in urban, suburban, and rural settings.
The commissioner shall implement a complete streets policy after consultation with stakeholders, state and regional agencies, local governments, and road authorities. The commissioner, after such consultation, shall address relevant protocols, guidance, standards, requirements, and training, and shall integrate related principles of context-sensitive solutions.
Beginning in 2011, the commissioner shall report on the implementation of the complete streets policy in the agency's biennial budget submission under section 174.02.
Local road authorities are encouraged, but not required, to create and adopt complete streets policies for their roads that reflect local context and goals. Nothing in this section may be construed to prohibit a local road authority from adopting a complete streets policy that incorporates or exceeds statutory complete streets principles.
(a) When evaluating a request for a variance from the engineering standards for state-aid projects under chapter 162 in which the variance request is related to complete streets, the commissioner shall consider the latest edition of:
(1) A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets, from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials; and
(2) for projects in urban areas, the Context Sensitive Solutions in Designing Major Urban Thoroughfares for Walkable Communities, from the Institute of Transportation Engineers.
(b) If the commissioner denies a variance request related to complete streets, the commissioner shall provide written reasons for the denial to the political subdivision that submitted the request.