Benefits to Residents:
· Air pollution levels drop dramatically as automobile traffic decreases.
· People who live on these routes are able to open their windows, go out on their balconies and patios, and enjoy the calm and quiet.
· Children and people with restricted mobility can access these public spaces without fear.
· Open Streets reduce the chances of senior citizen pedestrian deaths while increasing access for senior citizens for whom walking is a health-promoting activity, helping to maintain bone and muscle strength, mobility, agility and independence.
· Walking can also prevent, delay or control many chronic ailments.
· Enabling young children to walk safely will encourage children to adopt healthy habits and connect them with nature.
· Open Streets are nudity-free and bead-free and celebrate the beauty of urban spaces and the glory of nature.
· Open Streets foster community-building, social interaction, and a higher quality of life. People who make use of Open Streets are open to interaction with others.
· Property values on these routes rise.
· Children can sell lemonade and Girl Scout Cookies.
· Open Streets are fun.
· As people become more used to walking and biking and more confident in their biking abilities, they use their cars less.
· Opening streets to bikers, walkers, and the lesser abled restores dignity to those who currently have to negotiate fast cars and inadequate pedestrian crossings.
· Open Streets participants are able to connect more easily to nearby parks, recreation facilities, and other public spaces.
· People run into neighbors and make plans with friends.
· Exercise by children enhances attention and memory and improves academic performance.
· According to the Law of People Watching, even the introverts come out when the extroverts start moving.
· Some people will find romance.
Benefits to Nearby Businesses and Organizations:
· Shops and restaurants on or near these routes see Sunday sales go up.
· Organizations on or near these routes discover symbiotic relationships.
Houses of worship and clubs raise funds by selling food and water in their parking lots, attract more people to their holiday and other bazaars and events, and publicize their other activities. Some organizations attract new members.
· Open Streets also open up opportunities for new businesses, such as pedicab companies.
· History and restaurant bike tours incorporate these routes into their routes.
· Real estate agents find it easier to sell houses within a few blocks of Open Streets. Potential buyers enjoy house-hunting on bicycles.
Benefits to City and County Taxpayers:
· Taxpayers enjoy the public spaces they own.
· Residents explore the natural features of their environments.
· People from other parts of Tampa feel welcome.
· People coming to Open Streets for exercise become healthier and health care costs to them and other taxpayers decrease.
Benefits to City of Tampa:
· Tampa will more easily attract the businesses and high-income workers who are attracted to such amenities; millenials want bike trails and venture capitalists follow Millenials.
· Our educated, brilliant children will decide to make their careers in Tampa instead of moving to more healthy forward-thinking cities.
· Tampa will be more of a destination for people from neighboring communities and for tourists.
· Closing streets to cars will promote sustainable transportation as more people will become comfortable riding bikes and walking and may consider bikes or feet for their daily commutes.
· In cities across the nation, as more people ride bikes, bicycle fatalities go down.
· Health care costs will go down as we build a culture of health.
· Tampa’s walkability score goes up.
· When people have fun in a city, they spend more money in that city.
· Tampa will be more attractive destination for active seniors.
· Residents of Tampa and Hillsborough County and visitors will meet as equals and we will create a healthier, more equitable community.
· People who participate in Open Streets tend to support (and sometimes help find financial support for) complete streets and multi-modal transportation.
· People will stop littering as people don’t like to walk or bike in dirty places.
· People will become more comfortable with bike lanes and begin to use existing under-utilized bike paths.