SDOT has completed construction of this year’s five Safe Routes to School projects. Working closely with school staff, students and parents, this Bridging the Gap funded program helps eliminate barriers and create solutions to make walking and biking safer and more accessible.
The 2011 projects were completed at Coe Elementary, Greenlake Elementary, West Seattle Elementary, Concord Elementary and Van Asselt Elementary. At West Seattle Elementary and Coe Elementary, SDOT installed new curb ramps and flashing beacons to emphasize the school zone speed limit of 20 miles per hour. An illuminated overhead crosswalk sign was installed at NE 65th St and 1st Ave NE to improve the visibility of the busy school crosswalk near Green Lake Elementary. Sidewalks were repaired at Green Lake and Van Asselt Elementary on Beacon Hill as well. Students at Concord Elementary in South Park should enjoy the 600 feet of beautiful new sidewalks with new curb ramps at the intersections that lead directly to their school. These projects significantly improved walking routes to school and advanced the city’s goal of getting more kids to walk and bike to school.
Another way we hope to increase the number of students that walk or bike to school is through our Mini-Grant Program. During October, International Walk to School month, SDOT is accepting applications for mini grants of up to $1,000 to fund creative activities or safety improvements to encourage more children to walk or bike to school. The activities must support the overall goal of educating and encouraging safer walking and bicycling to school. Both private and public schools, PTAs or other school-related nonprofit groups may apply. Send us your completed applications by the end of the business day on Friday, October 28th. Recipients will be announced in December.
Over the past four and a half years, the Safe Routes to School Program has made improvements at 23 schools across the city. Those schools include Concord Elementary, Olympic Hills Elementary, BF Day Elementary, Thurgood Marshall Elementary, Roxhill Elementary, Dearborn Park Elementary, Sacajawea Elementary, North Beach Elementary, Cleveland High School, Blaine K-8, Kimball Elementary, Broadview Thomson Elementary, Dunlap Elementary, Bailey Gatzert Elementary, Summit K-12 School, Sanislo Elementary, Northgate Elementary, Wing Luke Elementary and Arbor Heights Elementary. Over the life of the nine-year levy, SDOT anticipates making enhancements at more than 30 schools throughout the city through this program.