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'Zero is our aspiration' | Mayor Vi Lyles and Charlotte leaders work to reduce traffic deaths

The Vision Zero initiative aims to cut down traffic-related deaths to zero, a goal held by both city leaders and advocates in Charlotte.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte city leaders are pushing to drop traffic deaths and inquiries to zero by 2023.

Vision Zero was implemented back in 2018. Progress has been made, but there is still work to be done. 

Charlotte has seen growth, with about 900,000 people living in the Queen City. Cars, pedestrians, and cyclists manage to co-exist on the streets, but when something goes wrong it can leave devastating impacts. 

“Vision Zero came about because of the loss of life,” Mayor Vi Lyles said.  

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WCNC Charlotte reporter Lexi Wilson sat down one-on-one with Lyles Wednesday morning. The mayor says city leaders are working to design and build safer roads, and part of that includes the Strategic Mobility Plan. 

“We are looking at areas especially where we can make traffic safety improvements, where we know there is development, we know there are schools," Scierra Bratton, Vision Zero Community Coordinator with CDOT, said. 

Around The Plaza, it can be a challenge for walkers and bikers. It's also an area where the Vision Zero Task Force installed infrastructure of a mid-block crossing. 

“We're really working hard, as we go through the redesign of our city as an urban community," Lyles said. 

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So far this year, CDOT says there have been 38 traffic deaths. While the Queen City hasn't hit its goal just yet, there's hope. 

“Everyone needs to have an aspirational, zero is our aspiration, but we’ve got a lot to do,” Lyles said.   

CDOT says to create safer roads it takes everyone, that includes behavior changes like adhering to signs and signals, and slowing down when you drive.

Contact Lexi Wilson at lwilson@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookX and Instagram.

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