Complete Streets

What are complete streets and complete streets policies?

Complete streets are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users. Pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities must be able to safely move along and across a complete street.

Creating complete streets means transportation agencies must change their orientation toward building primarily for cars. Instituting a complete streets policy ensures that transportation agencies routinely design and operate the entire right of way to enable safe access for all users. Places with complete streets policies are making sure that their streets and roads work for drivers, transit users, pedestrians, and bicyclists, as well as for older people, children, and people with disabilities.

What does a complete street look like?

Since each complete street is unique, it is impossible to give a single description. But ingredients that may be found on a complete street include sidewalks, bike lanes (or wide paved shoulders), special bus lanes, comfortable and accessible transit stops, frequent crossing opportunities, median islands, accessible pedestrian signals, curb extensions, and more. A complete street in a rural area will look quite different from a complete street in a highly urban area. But both are designed to balance safety and convenience for everyone using the road. Look at our ‘Many Types of Complete Streets’ slideshow to see examples from across the country.

For more, go to

Complete Streets Toolkit

For model policies, guidelines, organizing tools and other, check out the Complete Streets Toolkit developed by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) with input from WALKSacramento and the Complete Streets Coalition.


Complete Streets to Transit – Terry Preston, August 2010
Given as a panelist at a Sacramento Regional Transit Green Line community meeting regarding safety and property values.