City Council will approve Complete Streets

By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – City leaders are expected to approve the Complete Streets policy next week after nearly two months of debate over its merits.
The City Council on Tuesday said it finally feels comfortable with the proposal, which would require sidewalks and bike lanes be considered on all major street projects.
“I’m excited you’re all in support of it,” said Senior City Planner Renee Autumn Ray during the council’s work session. “I think other communities will be looking to us to see how they can implement the policy themselves.”
Ray first pitched the policy to the council Feb. 3 with the backing of Mayor Jack Reed Jr.
If the council adopts it, the policy will become a permanent part of Tupelo’s development code and subdivision regulations. It also will make the city Mississippi’s first to join the movement. Similar movements are ongoing in Arkansas, Atlanta, the entire state of Tennessee and more.
But council members have had numerous questions and concerns about it, including potential cost to the city and developers. Most of those problems have been solved with minor amendments to the original policy.
“I don’t see how there could be any more questions,” said Ward 4 City Councilwoman Nettie Davis after her colleagues signed off on it. “We’ve been spinning our wheels on this thing for six weeks, almost two months.”
The council next meets April 6.

Contact Emily Le Coz at (662) 678-1588 or emily.lecoz@djournal.com.