Our Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program is an evidence-based approach to address safety concerns and provide more opportunities for our Northwoods students to walk and bike to school or at school. WCPSS joined with the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center and other partners to work with five elementary and/or middle schools to improve child pedestrian safety and support walking and/or biking to school – and Northwoods is lucky enough to be one of those schools!
As one of the five model schools in the project, Northwoods received technical assistance and funding to develop and implement a comprehensive Safe Routes to School plan. This effort also involves working with WCPSS and the Town of Cary to examine policies and practices that can improve safety.
What is Safe Routes to School (SRTS)?
SRTS refers to a variety of multi-disciplinary programs aimed at both increasing the number of students walking and bicycling to school and reducing the number of vehicle trips associated with school travel. Programs, activities and projects improve traffic safety and air quality around school areas and address childhood obesity and public health issues through education, encouragement, increased law enforcement, and engineering. SRTS efforts are led by partnerships among municipalities, school districts, community members, parent volunteers and law enforcement agencies.
The Northwoods SRTS Action plan
As one of five partner schools in the Safe Routes Wake County project, Northwoods Elementary received staff support, guidance and funding to develop a comprehensive Safe Routes to School Plan and implement the priority recommendations identified in the plan. The effort also involves working with WCPSS and the Town of Cary to examine policies and practices that can improve safety for child pedestrians.
This report outlines infrastructure and programmatic recommendations that will support the Northwoods Elementary School and Town of Cary Safe Routes to School Program.
Results of our Safe Routes to School Plan
Our Safe Routes to School program includes annual participation in Walk and Bike to School Days, an ongoing Walking School Bus program, and working with key agencies to implement needed infrastructure changes in and around the Northwoods campus. Our Action plan resulted in a much needed redesign of the Boundary St. crosswalk in 2017. More recently, parents from our SRTS steering committee have been active contributors on the Town of Cary’s new Chapel Hill Rd. corridor study.