In Los Angeles, students often face personal and traffic safety issues. These issues present barriers to walking or biking to school, impacting student health, school performance, and contributing to traffic congestion. Safe Routes to School prioritizes youth safety as a core initiative of Los Angeles’ Vision Zero Action Plan.
Nelson\Nygaard has been supporting the City’s Safe Routes to School program since 2013. This program is focused on enhancing school-based capacity to increase and manage student walking and biking activities to schools, improve pedestrian and school safety awareness and education, deepen Safe Routes to School partnerships, and conduct safety assessments. We have provided bilingual support for Walk to School program activities, led walk audits at LA city schools, and developed materials to convey LADOT’s commitment to improving school community safety through infrastructure, education, encouragement, enforcement, and evaluation activities.
This work builds on Principal Dru van Hengel’s groundbreaking work in 2013, in which she facilitated conversations among LADOT and Los Angeles Unified School District officials, school administrators, active parents and families, elected officials, Los Angeles Police and Fire Departments, and community-based organizations to recruit 50 schools to participate in Walk to School Day.