Safe Routes to School Program
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Welcome to Virginia Safe Routes to School!
If you’re new to Safe Routes to School, click here for an introduction letter to the program from Virginia’s Safe Routes to School Coordinator Rob Williams. And be sure to check out this program brochure for some quick facts about Virginia Safe Routes to School.
The Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program has been active in Virginia since 2007 and helps schools and communities across the state make walking and biking to school a safe, convenient, natural activity.
January 14 – VDOT announces Non-Infrastructure Grant funding for 2015
Non-Infrastructure (Activities and Programs) Grants are available in amounts between $5,000 and $100,000 to support education, encouragement, evaluation and enforcement programs related to Safe Routes to School. The Non-Infrastructure Grant can also be used to fund a SRTS coordinator. Before starting the grant application, applicants must complete a SRTS Activities & Programs Plan (APP). Detailed information about eligibility can be found in the Program Guidelines and application information is available on the Activities and Programs Plan and Non-Infrastructure Grants webpage. Non-Infrastructure Grant applications are due March 31, 2015.
January 2 – QuickStart Mini-grant Spring Due Dates
The spring due dates for QuickStart Mini-grants are February 12, March 12 and April 9. These $1,000 grants for schools interested in funding a small (or large) Safe Routes to School Activity like Crossing Guard Appreciation Day (February 11) or Bike to School Day (May 6) events are easy to apply for and a great way to start up a Safe Routes program. Applications are evaluated in the order they are received (hint: apply early!) Learn more with the Learn it. Do it. Live it. QuickStart Mini-grants resource guide and apply online before any of the three dates listed above.
February 11 – Virginia’s Second Annual Crossing Guard Appreciation Day! Crossing Guard Appreciation Day is a statewide event devoted to saying thank you to those who help students cross the street safely on their way to and from school.
While the Virginia SRTS Program has designated the second Wednesday of February as Crossing Guard Appreciation Day, we encourage schools and communities to plan their own Crossing Guard Appreciation Day on any day that works for them to recognize the valuable service crossing guards provide to make safe routes to school a reality.
Shrevewood Elementary School’s Healthy Living Festival, Falls Church VA
The Safe Routes to School Program is a federally-funded program created under Section 1404 of the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU).
As written in SAFETEA-LU, the purpose of the SRTS program is to:
- Enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school
- Make bicycling and walking to school a safer and more appealing transportation alternative, thereby encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle from an early age
- Facilitate the planning, development, and implementation of projects and activities that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution in the vicinity of schools
In July 2013, MAP-21 – the new federal transportation bill -- became law, folding SRTS into a new Transportation Alternatives program. SRTS projects are now eligible to compete for funding alongside other programs, including the Transportation Enhancements program and Recreational Trails program. VDOT’s Local Assistance Division is managing the Transportation Alternatives program. Click here for more information.
Non-infrastructure funding from SAFETEA-LU is still available through the Virginia Safe Routes to School Program. More information is available on the Travel Plans and Grants landing page.
Virginia SRTS Program Strategic Plan
The VDOT Safe Routes to School Program completed a Strategic Plan to guide our work through 2017. The Plan is available for download by clicking on the cover.
Robert J. Williams
Safe Routes to Schools Program coordinator
Transportation and Mobility Planning Division
Virginia Department of Transportation
1401 E. Broad St.
Richmond, VA 23219