Tuesday, February 17 2009 @ 02:37 PM UTC
Contributed by: B' Spokes
The study identifies several barriers that stand in the way of statewide and local efforts to reduce auto congestion around schools. These are grouped by category:
• Reducing auto congestion is not part of schools’ primary mission or plans as providers of basic education. K-12 schools have few incentives or requirements to reduce auto congestion.
• There is no existing framework to encourage or require congestion reduction around schools. Elementary and secondary schools have been exempted from the CTR Law and generally have not developed a culture or administrative system to reduce employee or student auto use.
• Schools are not sited with the intention of being accessible by foot, bicycle, or transit.
• The Safe Routes to Schools program offers benefits beyond safety and healthy physical activity for students. It is one of WSDOT’s tools to help residents reduce vehicle miles travelled (VMT) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. However, it does not appear to be linked with or focused on other departmental transportation demand management (TDM) and commute trip reduction (CTR) strategies. Under its current formulation, its key indicators revolve around physical activity and safety, not measures of auto use and student drop offs.
• Schools in our Programs of Interest did not employ disincentives to driving alone such as charging high school students to park or limiting drop-off and pick-up space in front of schools.
• While the post-secondary Programs of Interest charged for parking, they did not manage parking with the intention of reducing demand, unlike the model unlimited access pass programs referenced in Phase 1 of the study.