Sunday, October 4, 2009

More Palo Alto Students Cycling to School

When it comes to children and bicycles, most of the news we get these days seems bad. Children are becoming increasingly sedentary and obese. School districts are prohibiting bicycles for safety reasons. Parents do not have time to ride with their kids. With all these discouraging trends getting media attention, it is especially encouraging to see that the City of Palo Alto, California is proving that bicycles can be a practical, enjoyable option for school transportation.

This article in Palo Alto Online, by Chris Kenrick, describes the sustained growth in the number of Palo Alto students cycling to school over the last decade. Currently, more than half of Palo Alto elementary school students, and one third of high school students, get to school without using a car. The article discusses the city-sponsored "Walk and Roll" week which includes many activities designed to encourage more students to make the switch from cars to bicycles. It also discusses measures which can be taken to make cycling on school routes as safe as possible.

These students in Portland, Oregon show that bicycles can be a safe, fun way to get to school. Photo by Jonathan Maus, BikePortland.org. Some rights reserved.

Cycloculture salutes Palo Alto and encourages the city to publicize its many advancements in integrating bicycles into its overall transportation plans.

3 comments:

alexaa said...

It's absolutely wright that parents are so busy they don't have enough time for kids and it prove to be dangerous for kids as they go for cycle riding alone.
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PM Summer said...

That photograph from Portland seems to show a group of kids blocking a sidewalk, pushing their bikes with their feet, dressed for danger (and it's real in that picture), with adult monitors walking beside them.

Looks like fear-conditioning, to me.

At that age, I was riding my bike to school in a suburban town of 500K people... using the roads.

Forbes Black said...

Okay, you caught me. The photo is from a class teaching kids about bike safety.