Vision Zero is a European concept that has been approved by a dozen cities in the U.S. including Tampa. The Tampa City Council, the Metropolitan Planning Organization, the Hillsborough County School System have all approved Vision Zero.
The core principle of Vision Zero is that life and health can never be exchanged for other benefits within society. This strongly contrasts with more conventional planning which weighs costs and benefits and where a monetary value is placed on life and health, and then that value is used to decide how much money to spend on a road network.
Vision Zero is based on four principles
- Ethics: Human life and health are paramount and take priority over mobility and other objectives of the road traffic system
- Responsibility: providers and regulators of the road traffic system share responsibility with users;
- Safety: road traffic systems should take account of human fallibility and minimize both the opportunities for errors and the harm done when they occur; and
- Mechanisms for change: providers and regulators must do their utmost to guarantee the safety of all citizens; they must cooperate with road users; and all three must be ready to change to achieve safety.