“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 grants and technical assistance. 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.
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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. The Rulemaking Advisory Committee submitted the revised Rule to the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) in 2018.
The Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC), adopted the amended Oregon Safe Routes to School Rule (OAR 737-025) in 2018.
For more information read the updated rule, SRTS Notice Filing, or contact email@example.com.
Safe Routes To School Advisory Committee
The Safe Routes to School Advisory Committee (SRAC), consists of approximately 15 volunteers who have been appointed by the ODOT Director. The committee meets at least quarterly and is charged with recommending projects for funding in ODOT's Safe Routes to School Infrastructure and Non-Infrastructure Grant Programs. The committee is advisory to the Oregon Transportation Commission and ODOT
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.
Say What You See Campaign
Infographic - Digital format only
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 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 are divided into three different programs with different eligibility, application guidelines, and timelines:
- Competitive Grant Program: The majority of the funds, 87.5 percent or greater, are 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 are 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 are 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.
For more information contact Leeanne.Fergason@odot.state.or.us.
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.