Cleaner Vehicles and Fuels
Convert Provo’s vehicle fleet to cleaner (Tier 3, CNG, and electric) vehicles
Converting from “Tier 2” to “Tier 3” fuel is among the most highly leveraged and cost-effective air quality controls measures available.[i] CNG and electric vehicles also produce fewer emissions than vehicles powered by traditional petroleum-based fuels.[ii]
Tool: Convert Provo’s vehicle fleets to clean fuel vehicles or vehicles with a smog rating of 8, 9, or 10.
The City has a large vehicle fleet and can set an example of responsible transportation to Provo’s residents and other cities by converting to clean fuel vehicles.
- Petroleum Reduction Planning Tool for vehicle fleet planning. Provides consumption-saving strategies and allows you to set goals for reducing consumption. http://www.afdc.energy.gov/prep/index.php
- Convert drive systems to hybrid electric, Ohio. An HVAC business in Ohio converted their fleet of vans to a hybrid electric drive system and cut their fuel usage by 30%. http://www.businessfleet.com/article/story/2015/04/hybrid-conversion-cuts-fleet-s-fuel-usage-by-30.aspx
- Fleet conversion, Salt Lake City. Since 2009, Salt Lake City has replaced 224 light- and heavy-duty vehicles with clean fuels/hybrid power, which now mark 15% of the fleet. This year, seven all-electric vehicles were also added to the fleet. http://www.slcmayor.com/pressreleases/2015/7/3/city-continues-to-green-its-fleet-with-new-zero-emisisons-electric-vehicles
Tool: Use natural gas use for heavy vehicles, like busses and trucks.
Large trucks and busses which are typically diesel-fueled can substantially improve emissions through conversions to natural gas.
- Report on natural gas vehicle emissions http://www.afdc.energy.gov/vehicles/natural_gas_emissions.html
Ensure that active transportation is measured and appropriately valued within overall transportation planning metrics.
Tool: Use metrics beyond Vehicular Level of Service (LOS) to assess new roadway projects.
Tools such as Multi-modal Level of Service (MMLOS), Bicycle Level of Service (BLOS) or Pedestrian Level of Service (PLOS) can be used to track the success of new roadway projects.
Tool: Develop an annual report describing active transportation metrics.
Tracking significant active transportation criteria including commute to work mode share, funds invested in facilities and programs, number of miles of facilities constructed, collision and health data can help to track the benefits of bicycling and walking within a community.
- San Francisco Bicycle Coalition: https://www.sfbike.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Annual-Report-2013-web.pdf
Encourage higher density and transit-oriented development.
People are more likely to use active and public transportation if there are small blocks, a high number of street intersections, and higher residential densities. These improvements to the urban environment would influence travel behavior and result in reduced emissions from vehicles by reducing trip distances and frequency.
Tool: Promote a maximum block length of 400’.
Requiring new developments to have block sizes below 400’ increases the pedestrian connectivity and allows for more mobility for cyclists and pedestrians. Traffic capacity also increases when a community has more connected street networks. Large block sizes do not facilitate active transportation.
These are several examples of connected urban environments from Allan Jacobs’ Great Streets. A denser urban fabric—meaning more connected streets and smaller blocks—leads to more street-level activity and more opportunities to replace automobile trips with other trips.
- Measuring Network Connectivity for Bicycling and Walking http://reconnectingamerica.org/assets/Uploads/TRB2004-001550.pdf
Tool: Require mid-block crossings on longer blocks.
Midblock crossings allow people to travel to places that are otherwise not served by the existing pedestrian network. If formal crossings are too far apart pedestrians will illegally cross the street, rather than walk to the next intersection. Mid-block crossings increase pedestrian and bicyclist comfort and safety.
- National Association of City Transportation Officials Urban Street Design Guide:
Tool: Require a connectivity index for new streets.
A Connectivity Index can be used to quantify how well a roadway network connects destinations. Indices can be measured separately for motorized and non-motorized travel, taking into account non-motorized shortcuts, such as paths that connect cul-de-sacs, and barriers such highways and roads that lack sidewalks. Several different methods can be used.
- Roadway Connectivity from the Victoria Transport Policy Institute
Develop better signal coordination.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, 5% of congested can be attributed to poorly timed traffic signals. It is estimated that each year, the U.S. driving population spends a cumulative 500,000 years in traffic, costing about $100 billion.[ix]
Tool: Conduct traffic pattern analysis.
An analysis of traffic patterns would inform how problem spots that would benefit from traffic light coordination. Such coordination could result in significant reductions in travel times and, therefore, vehicle emissions.
- Traffic signal coordination, Portland. http://www.oregonmetro.gov/sites/default/files/its_signals.pdf
Develop a Public Works Sustainability Plan with an emphasis on air.
The Public Works Department has a key role to play in cleaning our air, and it has expertise how to make an impact. Consider the roles you might fulfill in cleaning the air and develop a departmental plan for sustainability with an emphasis on air quality. Develop a method for tracking and measuring progress, and for annual review.
[iii] EPA’s Fuel Economy and Efficiency label. https://www3.epa.gov/carlabel/
[v] From City of Davis, California. http://cityofdavis.org/home/showdocument?id=4809
[vi] From Lehigh Valley Planning Commission.
[vii] Image from Allan Jacobs’ Great Streets.
[viii] From NACTO Street Design Guide. http://nacto.org/publication/urban-street-design-guide/intersection-design-elements/crosswalks-and-crossings/midblock-crosswalks/