“Safe Routes to School” refers to efforts that improve, educate, or encourage children safely walking (by foot or mobility device) or biking to school. The Oregon Department of Transportation has two main types of Safe Routes to School programs: infrastructure and non-infrastructure. Infrastructure programs focus on making sure safe walking and biking routes exist through investments in crossings, sidewalks and bike lanes, flashing beacons, and the like. Non-infrastructure programs focus on education and outreach to assure awareness and safe use of walking and biking routes. Investments include developing Safe Routes to School Action Plans, educating students on walking and biking options and how to do use them safely (laws, rules, and guidelines), among other efforts.
ODOT's Safe Routes to School programs are focused on providing grants to make it safer for Oregon’s children to walk or bike to school, providing opportunity and encouragement. ODOT also houses information resources and provides some technical support. Information about the grant programs and resources are provided below.
Sign up for email updates to stay informed on the latest Safe Routes to School Program activities.
From 2005-2012 there was dedicated federal funding for Safe Routes to School infrastructure and non-infrastructure. When that went away, ODOT and the Oregon Transportation Commission used its discretion to continue some dedicated funding for non-infrastructure. Although there was no dedicated funding for infrastructure, several Safe Routes to School projects successfully competed for funding over the years.
In 2017, the Oregon Legislature passed the landmark transportation funding package (HB2017) which dedicates infrastructure funding once again to Safe Routes to School. Funding will flow into the Safe Routes to School Fund (ORS 184.740), guided by Oregon Administrative Rule 737-025. The new funding source for infrastructure money is state highway funds. These have different constitutional restrictions than federal funds and the Rule must be amended to make it consistent with state laws. Projects on school grounds, bike racks, off-road improvements and planning studies will no longer be eligible for infrastructure funding. A Rulemaking Advisory Committee is currently working on revising the rule.
FY2017 Non-Infrastructure Grant
The Transportation Safety Division announces the call for non-infrastructure Safe Routes to School grants.
The Transportation Safety Division has $300,000 available per year in non-infrastructure SRTS programs for the following funding periods:
FY2017 (October 1, 2016 - September 30, 2017)
FY2018 (October 1, 2017 - September 30, 2018)
FY2019 (October 1, 2018 - September 30, 2019)
The available funding is being bundled for a three year window in order to allow applicants advance planning. This is a competitive call and applicants may apply for up to $50,000 per year for up to three years. Project funding will not exceed the available $300,000 per year.
There is a 12% match requirement (88% Federal funds, 12% local match).
The goals of a SRTS non-infrastructure program are to increase the ability and opportunity for children K-8 to:
Walk, roll and bike safely to and from school;
Promote a culture of walking and biking to and from school while encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle; and
Facilitate planning, development and fuel consumption and air pollution within two miles of the school.
A SRTS program is built around the strategies of the six E's: Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, Equity, Evaluation, and Engineering. Note that this application is NOT for engineering projects, which are an activity of the ODOT STIP Enhance process.
Please read through the Non-Infrastructure Application Guidelines to learn about the priorities for this cycle.
FY2017 SRTS Non-Infrastructure Guidelines
FY2017 SRTS Non-Infrastructure Application
FFY Agreements and Assurances
Complete the Oregon Action Plan Template
An approved Action Plan must be received for every K-8 that is affected by the project proposal at the time of application. The Plan initiates evaluation and community involvement activities that prepare the school to seek SRTS project funds through the state program, or to implement SRTS projects and activities with other funding sources.
Oregon SRTS Action Plan Template
Student Tally Sheet
Parent Survey Form - English
Parent Survey Form - Spanish
Student Hand Tally and Parent Survey Forms
The National Center for Safe Routes to School Clearinghouse is the source for the forms. If you cannot download the forms from this webpage, the hand tally, parent survey, form instructions and data tools descriptions are available at saferoutesinfo or under NCSRTS Resources (Evaluation) topic. The returned tally forms and survey forms may be entered directly online at saferoutesdata.org or you may opt to mail in your surveys to the National SRTS Clearinghouse. For more information, visit the NCSRTS Resources (Evaluation) topic.
Recommendations developed from the Action Plan will range from infrastructure improvements to programmatic actions (education, encouragement and enforcement). The SRTS Program highly encourages infrastructure project applicants to also consider non-infrastructure (education, enforcement and evaluation components.
Say What You See - Is a new Safe Routes To School :30 TV PSA: Back to school time means more children and more cars on the road. This spot produced by Oregon Department of Transportation tells you how to play a game where everyone wins - children walking and biking to school, pedestrians, bicyclists, and all Oregonians — even Bigfoot!
Let's Ride the School Bus - A tool for parents, teachers and school bus drivers. The video is a collaborative effort by the Oregon Department of Transportation, Safe Routes to School; the Oregon Department of Education, Pupil Transportation; and Commute Options.
Beacon Buddies Get a Brake - Funded by the Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Safe Routes to School and the U.S. DOT, this video demonstrates how rectangular, rapid flashing beacons work at a crosswalk.
Walk and Bike to School Day
Whether it's an entire community event or parents meeting at a park to walk with their kids, participating in this event shows the many benefits of walking or biking to school.
Below are some materials you can use to promote walking and biking in your community.
Look Out for Kids
Rise and Shine
For more information and to find out who is participating in Oregon, visit the Walk+Bike website.
The Oregon Transportation Commission, or OTC, has formed a Rulemaking Advisory Committee to amend the Oregon Safe Routes to School Rule (OAR 737-025). The purpose of the committee is to align the rule with new funding made available by recent state legislation, and consider how infrastructure funding for Safe Routes to School should be structured. The committee is advisory to the ODOT and the OTC. The public is invited to comment on the draft rule from May 1st through May 31st, 2018 and is invited to a Public Hearing in Salem on May 15, 2018. Visit the advisory committee website below for more details.
Safe Routes to School Rulemaking Advisory Committee
The purpose of the SRTS Infrastructure Program is to allow ODOT to distribute funds deposited into the SRTS fund in accordance with OAR 737-025. These funds are intended to build infrastructure projects that address the needs of students that walk and bicycle to school considering the unique perspectives and behavior of children. The fund receives $10 million state highway dollars annually increasing to $15 million annually in 2023. The funds will be divided into three different programs with different eligibility, application guidelines, and timelines pending rule approval by the Oregon Transportation Commission in July of 2018.
The three SRTS Infrastructure Grant Programs will likely be:
- Competitive Grant Program: The majority of the funds, 87.5 percent or greater, will used for a Competitive Grant Program to build street safety projects to reduce barriers and hazards for children walking or bicycling to or from schools.
- Rapid Response Grant Program: Up to 10 percent of funds will be used for urgent needs or systemic safety issues that occur in between Competitive Program Grant cycles.
- Project Identification Grant Program: Up to 2.5 percent of funds will be used by ODOT to help communities identify projects to reduce barriers and hazards for children walking or bicycling to and from school and that will lead to eventual construction. Details about the current funding cycle can be found in the below links. In January of odd years, ODOT will announce the application process and timeline for the upcoming cycles. In addition ODOT will announce program application cycles as they open.
Competitive Grant Program anticipated details:
These details are subject to change pending OTC approval of OAR 737-025 in July of 2018.
- Funding available for 2018-2020: $16 million
- Project funding request minimum: $60 thousand
- Project funding request maximum: $2 million
- Eligible entities: Cities, Counties, ODOT, Tribes, Transit Districts, and other Road Authorities
- Eligible projects: Street safety projects within a one-mile radius of schools that help students walk and bicycle to school safely
- Focus Area: Title I schools are a focus area in the 2018 competitive grant cycle. A Title I school is defined as a school where 40% or more students are eligible for free/reduced lunch. This focus area will act as an eligibility criteria in the 2018 competitive grant cycle.
More information about the upcoming grant programs will be available by June 19, 2018.
Learn how to apply for the new ODOT Safe Routes to School Infrastructure Grant Program funds by attending one of ODOT’s upcoming workshops.
In the summer of 2018, ODOT will solicit proposals for the first round of new SRTS Infrastructure funding. ODOT staff will present a program overview and answer questions about this new opportunity. The presentation will cover SRTS Infrastructure Program specifics including timeline, eligibility, proposal selection process, match requirements, and proposal development tips. The target audiences include city, county, tribes, transit district staff, and interested public school representatives. All workshops are open to the general public. See the workshop flyer for more information.
Below are examples of what information will be covered in the workshops:
- 6/18 (1:00 - 2:30 p.m.) - BAKER CITY WORKSHOP - AGENDA
Location: Baker County Library, 2400 Resort St
Hosted in conjunction with the Northeast and Southeast Area Commission on Transportation meeting.
- 6/25 (3:00 - 4:30 p.m.) - SALEM WORKSHOP - AGENDA
Location: Chemeketa Center for Business and Industry, 626 High St NE
Hosted in conjunction with the Safe Routes to School Network Annual Meeting. See the Oregon Safe Routes to School website for more information.
- 6/27 (1:00 - 2:30 p.m.) - WEBINAR
Location: Online through JoinMe
RSVP to LeeAnne Fergason, RSVP is recommended but not required.
- 7/2 (2:30 - 4:00 p.m.) - PORTLAND WORKSHOP
Location: ODOT Region 1, 123 NW Flanders St
Hosted in conjunction with the Region 1 Area Commission on Transportation Meeting.
- 7/12 (12:30 - 2:00 p.m.) - REDMOND WORKSHOP
Location: City of Redmond Public Works Training Room, 243 E. Antler Avenue
Hosted in Conjunction with the Central Oregon Area Commission on Transportation meeting.
- 8/8 (2:30 - 4:30 p.m.) - SPRINGFIELD WORKSHOP
Location: Agnes Stewart Middle School, 900 S. 32nd St
Hosted in conjunction with the Lane Area Commission on Transportation Meeting.
- 8/16 (10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.) - ASHLAND WORKSHOP
Location: Ashland Branch Library, 410 Siskiyou Boulevard
Hosted in conjunction with the Transportation Option Group of Oregon meeting. See the Transportation Option Group of Oregon website for more information.
Sign up for email updates to stay informed on the latest Safe Routes to School Infrastructure Grant Program activities.
Competitive Grant Program Anticipated Timeline
The following timeline is subject to change pending OTC approval of OAR 737-025 in July of 2018.
- July 23, 2018: Application process opens
- August 31, 2018: Letter of Intent due
- October 15, 2018: Applications due
- October-January 2018: Review, scoring, and recommendation
- January-February 2019: Final approval by the OTC
Information about focus areas, project selection, and the SRTS Advisory Committee will be available by July 31, 2018. Information about funded projects will be available in March of 2019.
Oregon Safe Routes to School supports the ODOT Safe Routes to School program and is funded through a grant. The website is a statewide approach to providing SRTS information with specific resources and stories from Oregon Communities.