Seattle Public Schools is partnering with the City of Seattle on the School Road Safety Initiative, announced by Mayor McGinn earlier this month, to increase safety on streets near schools and make it easier for children to get to and from school safely, however families choose to travel.
This initiative will include a School Road Safety Plan, which will look at the environment on streets near schools as well as the other things that involve safety, like education, enforcement, encouragement and more.
If you’re a family with children going to school in Seattle, the city would like to hear your thoughts. Please find the school road safety survey in various languages below: one of the links below. The survey should take between 6 to 10 minutes and will close on June 30.
Pedal over to the U-District on Thursday, May 23, for the annual UW Trail Party. Join UW Transportation Services and the Cascade Bicycle Club from 4-7 p.m. for music, free bike fits, basic tune ups, and lots of giveaways along the Burke-Gilman Trail.
Mayor Mike McGinn and librarians from The Seattle Public Library are launching a pilot program to bring library services to popular community events via bike this summer.
The program, titled Books on Bikes, was the inspiration of Montlake Branch Librarian Jared Mills, who submitted the idea to a staff committee for grant funding.
“I thought it would be great to combine two things Seattle loves: our libraries and bikes,” said Mills.
Books on Bikes is a full-service library model, able to provide people with digital downloads, access to library magazines for smartphones and tables, help with signing up for a library card, information about free Library program and more.
A total of 11 Library staff members make up the Books on Bikes team and they will pedal the Books on Bikes trailers, constructed by Colin Stevens from Haulin’ Colin, to local parks and celebrations this summer.
“This is a great program that will help people access library services wherever they are” said Mayor Mike McGinn. “Books on Bikes will build awareness of library resources, as well as of the health benefits and fun of bike riding.”
We received some really great photos, which shows that bikes can take you to some interesting places. It was very hard to choose a winner, so hard in fact, that we’re picked TWO winners this week.
First up, congratulations to Jeff Miller of team U-District Kyphotic Kommuters! His photo reminds us that everyone wants to enjoy the ride and get home safely to friends, family and the people that we love. His photo captured this feeling.
“My bike always gets me back home, where this little guy is waiting for his helmeted pops...”
Congrats also to Emily Adams of team Third Place Bikes! Her owl photo reminded us that there are many things we get to see and experience from a bicycle, sometimes hidden right in front of us.
“This morning's commute featured Barred Owls. I could have watched them all day.
The energy was contagious at Bryant Elementary this morning as dozens of students, accompanied by a police escort, parents, Seattle Public Schools Superintendent José Banda, Councilmember Sally Bagshaw and Cascade staff, biked to school.
After meeting for coffee and donuts and Top Pot Doughnut on 35th Avenue NE, the bike parade made a one-mile trek south to Bryant Elementary, which together with its Northeast Seattle community has been working for many years to create an environment where it is safe, welcoming and fun to bike to school.
“Bryant is not alone,” said Julie Salanthé, Cascade’s Education Director. “There is a growing movement and interest in supporting our kids in getting to school under their own power.”
“Today is about a shared vision for our community –a vision that people of every age and ability feel safe and confident enough to ride to school and to ride in their neighborhoods,” continued Salanthé. “Cascade’s mission is “creating a better community through bicycling” but this isn’t just our mission. It’s a shared idea about our community that we all work on together, that we all participate in.”
Superintendent Banda also spoke of the importance of making it safe and fun for students to bike to school.
“In 1969, nearly half of the school-age children [in Seattle] walked or biked to school,” stated Superintendent Banda. “We need to get back to that number.”
“Today, fewer than 15 percent of kids walk and bike. Our children are less active, less independent, and less healthy, said Banda. “Research shows that kids riding or walking to school perform better in school on tasks involving concentration as compared to kids who are driven —so we need encourage more of this.”
Hoping to make walking or biking to school the first choice for families as they choose their daily transportation, Banda called on the Seattle community to make it safer for kids to get to school, by reducing the traffic chaos and conflicts near our schools each morning and afternoon. (View Banda’s full speech here.)
As many rallied at Bryant Elementary, many more were participating in dozens of events happening throughout the city. We estimate that about 3,500 kids participated in Bike to School Day events today, some trying to ride for the first time:
Alki Elementary School bike train
Bike train at Loyal Heights
Bike to School Day at Salmon Bay
Bike Ambassadors and bike-blended smoothies at Eckstein Middle School