Safe Routes to School

Overview

 WC Safe Routes Logo
State, county and city officials and residents recognize the benefits of active transportation and are taking steps to encourage walking, biking and using transit more often. Active transportation promotes community health, reduces traffic congestion, and improves community livability. 
 
The Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program plays an important role in this process. It brings transportation and education leaders together to encourage children to walk and bike safely to school as part of a healthy daily routine.

In September 2013, Washington County received a $150,000 non-infrastructure grant from the Oregon Safe Routes to School Program to fund a SRTS coordinator for three years. This coordinator will help boost the number of SRTS programs and activities throughout the county while building valuable SRTS partnerships among city and county agencies, schools, community organizations, and neighborhoods. The SRTS coordinator leads these partners in coordination efforts as well as leverage expertise, resources and program elements that consider the "5 E's of Safe Routes to School."


School Access Improvement Study (SAIS)

Completed in February 2016, School Access Improvement Study (SAIS) evaluated access to 53 public schools significantly impacted by County roads in urban unincorporated Washington County or within cities.

The goals of the study are to:

  • Understand the extent of needs
  • Identify the projects that will make the most difference to student travel and safety
  • Prioritize projects
  • Determine funding opportunities such as Gain Share, Urban Road Maintenance District, grants, and Major Streets Transportation Improvement Program (MSTIP).
The County worked with school district staff to develop a list of projects that improve safety and increase walking and biking. Not every gap or need is included on the project list; those that are included provide the greatest benefit. The project list will be updated as SRTS Action Plans, new development, and projects are completed. Working together, the County, school districts, parents, and communities can improve travel safety around schools.

For more information, contact Shelley Oylear, Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, at shelley_oylear@co.washington.or.us


The 5 E's & Videos

Srts 5E GraphicThe national SRTS Program uses a proven, multi-strategy approach called the Five E‘s to promote safe travel to and from school.

NEW! Washington County Safe Routes to School Program video Capture

NEW! Back to School Videos - School Zone Safety and Road Safety 
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NEW! Back to School Video - School is in - Stay Sharp!
Presentation_SchoolsIn
 


Who Benefits? Everyone!

  • Safe Routes to School takes steps to improve the safety, visibility, accessibility and convenience of key routes to and from school. And it’s fun!

  • Skill building activities for students and the community will help identify and overcome barriers to getting to school in ways other than driving while also keeping everyone safe!

  • Walking and biking are positive social activities that build knowledge of the neighborhood and its members.

  • More students walking and biking to school increases the “people presence” in your neighborhood. More eyes and ears on the street create a safer neighborhood and even slow down cars.

  • Students who walk and bike to school develop healthy life-long skills, safety habits, confidence, and independence.

  • Regular physical activity is fun and improves mental and physical health: a walk to school = one more child ready to learn!

  • Less traffic congestion in and around the school means improved traffic safety and reduced air pollution.

  • Safe Routes to School builds healthier students, creative energy, leadership and a community where people want to live!


How you can help!


Working TogetherWashington County’s SRTS program relies on many partners working together to improve safety and encourage walking and biking to school. Please join us on this mission!

People that are key to planning a successful SRTS program include students, parents, teachers, school officials, community officials (police, engineers, health experts), bike and pedestrian advocates and neighborhood groups.   

If you have an interest in being a partner, call or email one of our SRTS representatives!



Washington County SRTS Contact

Shelley Oylear   (503) 846-7819
shelley_oylear@co.washington.or.us



Additional resources: