A School Street is a car-free block beside a school open to walking, biking, and rolling during pick-up and drop-off (30 to 60 minutes depending on location). Motor vehicles are not permitted to enter or exit the block when the School Street is in effect, with exceptions for local residents and school buses. Parked vehicles may remain.
School Streets is a popular program in many jurisdictions around the world and has been shown to:
- Create a safer environment for children
- Improve air quality
- Encourage active travel to school and promote independent mobility
- Reduce congestion and vehicle volumes around schools
Implementing School Streets involves collaboration between PBOT, schools, parents, and the community. The necessary infrastructure might include temporary barriers, signs, and road markings that clearly indicate the restricted hours for motorized traffic.
It's important to note that the success of School Streets relies on effective communication and community buy-in. Addressing concerns from parents and residents about potential inconveniences, finding suitable alternative routes for local traffic, and establishing clear enforcement measures are all crucial steps in the process. Schools must also have adequate staffing or volunteers to provide information to drivers about the closure and alternative routes, move barriers for local residents and school buses, and ensure students are out of the street when these vehicles enter the School Street.