About Safe Routes to School
Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a partnership between the City of Portland, schools, neighborhoods, community organizations and agencies that advocate for and implement programs that make walking and biking around our neighborhoods and schools fun, easy, safe and healthy for all students and families while reducing congestion around schools.
State and local SRTS programs support a national effort to promote active transportation in and around school campuses. Portland’s own program is housed within the City of Portland Bureau of Transportation, Active Transportation & Safety Division.
Starting with eight schools in 2005, the Portland program now has over 100 school partners in five districts. SRTS has helped increase walking and biking to Portland schools by 35% since 2006.
When working with schools, the Safe Routes program focuses on 6 E’s:
- Encouragement – activities to promote walking, biking and rolling to and from school
- Education – pedestrian and bike safety education in schools
- Enforcement – partnership with Portland Police to reduce speeding around schools
- Evaluation – student travel surveys and program assessment
- Engineering – improvements to streets, signs and signals around schools
- Equity – services to reduce health and wealth disparities in Portland
In 2011, the City of Portland’s SRTS program worked with community partners to create policy around equitable service delivery. SRTS staff and stakeholders acknowledge that these goals can only be achieved through coordinated and focused efforts by both governmental and community partners.
- By 2035, 75 elementary schools within the City of Portland will receive biking and walking education.
- By 2035, 75% of all students attending elementary schools in Portland will travel to school by foot or bike.
Commitment to Equity
The Portland SRTS program is committed to achieving its goals in all schools, but is especially committed to meeting its goals in schools with high percentages of students and families that have the most risk of inequitable access to transportation. This includes people of color, people experiencing poverty, people with disabilities, and people who experience language barriers.