Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info


Pedestrians and transportation

students and parents walking home from school
Walking is the most common and accessible form of transportation and physical activity. Even when people drive or take public transportation, walking to a vehicle is part of that trip.

Pedestrian planning at MnDOT

The Minnesota Department of Transportation oversees a statewide transportation system, which also includes people who walk and roll. MnDOT’s bicycle and pedestrian section provides goals, direction and programs related to the pedestrian system. Key legislation in Minnesota includes goals related to walking, the State Non-Motorized Transportation Committee and the Safe Routes to School Program. There is not currently one unifying, state-level, direction-setting document specific to the pedestrian system as there is for other transportation systems through the Minnesota GO Family of Plans, however, from a transportation perspective, this is the primary reason for the development of Minnesota Walks, formerly known as the Statewide Pedestrian System Plan.

News and updates

  • April 10, 2018 update: Good News! The FHWA has issued a new interim approval (IA-21) for the use of Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFBs). Minnesota was granted blanket interim approval for all roadways and jurisdictions statewide on April 5, 2018.
    RRFBs will again be allowed to be installed as pedestrian-actuated conspicuity enhancements for pedestrian and school crossing warning signs under certain limited conditions. For more information, see the Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons guidance (PDF).
  • Feb. 2 update: The FHWA has rescinded the Interim Approval of Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons and no new devices are allowed to be installed unless a construction project has documentation of RRFBs with procurements issued and/or construction plans underway prior to Dec. 21, 2017. Existing devices can remain inplace until the end of their useful life. For more information see the Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons guidance.
  • Mark you calendars for the 2018 Bike+Walk Conference. The event is geared toward everyone interested in supporting and promoting biking and walking in Minnesota. The event will be full of multidisciplinary conversations about the intersection of active transportation, community development, inequities and advocacy. Visit the Bike+Walk Minnesota website for more information.
  • MnDOT and the Minnesota Department of Health have released Minnesota Walks: Current & Future Steps Towards a Walkable Minnesota. This document sets the stage for Minnesota Walks by addressing the importance of walking, why it should be easier, the difficulties that some people face when walking, and how Minnesota is on track to improve the pedestrian environment.

    In 2016, MnDOT and MDH released the findings from the Pedestrian Plan Community Engagement Report. Further information about Minnesota Walks can be found on the Minnesota Walks home page.