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Bartow, Fla (October 31, 2022) – Media is invited to attend the Gulf Coast Safe Streets Summit at RP Funding Center in Lakeland on Thursday, November 3, 2022. The summit is hosted by the Polk Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) and is supported by all Polk County communities and sister agencies including Citrus Connection, Polk County Public Schools, Florida Department of Transportation and Polk Vision. 

The 2022 Gulf Coast Safe Streets Summit is more than just speakers. The focus of the Summit is to “Experience Safety.” Participants will experience firsthand how different concepts, laws and ideas impact the safety of those around us and the designs of our transportation infrastructure. The Summit includes a Safety Fair in the morning session with more than 12 safety activities and 6 mobile tours, and regional safety awards and presentations in the afternoon session. The keynote speakers are Melissa Wandall, president of the National Coalition for Safer Roads and Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

The Summit is expected to attract more than 200 participants, including local elected leaders, policy makers, administrators, planners and engineers. 

The Tampa Bay and Central Florida regions are consistently ranked as one of most dangerous places to drive, walk and ride. The Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Metropolitan Area was ranked as the most dangerous metropolitan area in the country for pedestrians in 2021 and the Lakeland-Winter Haven Metropolitan Area was listed as the ninth most dangerous metropolitan area in the country for pedestrians in 2021. More than 120 people lost their lives and more than 450 were seriously injured on Polk County roads from 2016-2020. This information was part of a study published by Smart Growth of America.

Summit Venue: RP Funding Center, 701 West Lime St., Lakeland, FL 33815

SUMMIT PROGRAM: Attached

Registration and Safety Fair: 9 a.m. – noon

Lunch: noon – 1 p.m.

Afternoon Session: 1 – 5 p.m. 

The Polk Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) is the lead transportation planning agency for Polk County.  The Polk TPO is working with local governments and the Florida Department of Transportation to reach its goal of a future without traffic-related fatalities

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