What We Heard
Driving is the primary mode of transportation for most Berkshire County residents, particularly in the most rural areas. Ideally, driving shouldn’t be the only way to get around the region. Non-drivers, and those without private cars, have few alternatives to remain engaged in community life.
Accessible and affordable public transit options should be expanded to include multiple taxi companies, ride-sharing and other on-demand services. The creation of more bike lanes and sidewalks to encourage and increase healthy alternatives to motorized travel is desirable. The development of rail service should be supported.
People should be able to navigate the region’s transit system with ease and feel comfortable using it. Transportation services should cater to people with a range of mobility needs. Helpful drivers and station staff trained and attuned to the unique needs of older riders or those living with disabilities, is essential. Information on safe, accessible and affordable transport services must be made more available to people, to encourage broader use.
Heavy traffic, poor road conditions, inadequate street lighting and poorly positioned signage are barriers to safe driving. Maintaining confidence as drivers age is important to ensuring a safe driving experience for all. Parking located close to buildings and drop-off and pick-up services are welcomed by young and old alike.
Goals at a Glance
- Maximize access to user-friendly transportation services to meet daily living, employment, health and socialization needs, through ways that are safe, effective, affordable, and respectful to each person served.
- Ensure residents are fully aware of existing transportation options. Identify barriers to use and facilitate solutions.
- Expand transportation options in innovative ways to address gaps in the existing system
- Identify on-line shopping and support local delivery services to reduce need for unnecessary driving.
- Keep older adults using their personal vehicles safely for as long as possible, through programs that support the retention of driver skills.
- Improve and develop infrastructure to encourage walking and biking and to increase safety for wheelchairs and other assistive devices.
- Encourage the use of Complete Streets solutions wherever appropriate.