School Traffic Reductions

posted in: Schools, Traffic In General | 0

Presented to the Town Council during Verbal Communication, 1/17/17

As Charles Dudley Warner once stated: Everybody complains about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.  Sometimes it feels the same is true about traffic in Los Gatos…..

I’m not here to complain about either, but rather to briefly mention what has been, is being done, and can be done about one specific cause of traffic congestion— SCHOOL TRAFFIC.

What HAS BEEN done:

  • Safe Routes to School has transformed attitudes about active transport and made huge strides in the past few years in getting students to walk, bike or scooter to and from school. 
  • The Town has created a BPAC, put in green bike lanes, and completed a study of traffic around schools.
  • The Police department has worked with the schools and nearby neighborhoods to facilitate safer routes.

What IS BEING DONE:

  • Safe Routes to School, PPW, School administrators, Youth groups and the TPC and BPAC are all working synergistically to get more students to school using active transport
  • The Town is completing its first Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan
  • With the passage of Measure B, there is an opportunity for Los Gatos to pursue a privatized school bussing program, similar to a program that has reduced school traffic by 25-30% in 8 years in Danville and San Ramon.  We WANT this program!

What CAN BE DONE right now (for FREE!)

  • Parents— keep those students walking and biking, even when it gets chilly.  We live in a VERY mild climate! Let’s make walking and biking the first option for those in town!
  • If your student MUST get to school in a car:
    • Keep up the carpooling!
    • High schoolers can still be driven by parents or other adults.  Sophomores and juniors with provisional licenses can’t take friends in their cars, and single-occupancy vehicles just create more traffic.  Further all those cars then require scarce parking.
    • You can drop your student at a park or local business several blocks from the school and have them walk the rest of the way.  This reduces traffic near the schools
    • Residents and commuters— any chance you get, make your drive trips 15-30 minutes before or after the school crush.  Everyone, especially you, will benefit!

The next time you’re in a car, remember— You’re not stuck in traffic, you ARE traffic.  Let’s work together on solutions!

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