National Partnership Mourns the Passing of Its Founder, Deb Hubsmith

Written by Risa Wilkerson, Safe Routes to School National Partnership Board Chair

Deb HubsmithIt is with a heavy heart today that the Safe Routes to School National Partnership (National Partnership) mourns the passing of its founder, Deb Hubsmith. Her family announced the news yesterday afternoon.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Reaches the Complete Streets Finish Line

The oceanfront city of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina – permanent population 27,000 – explodes with tourists and temporary workers from all over the world during the summer. With as many as 450,000 people congregating on the seven-mile stretch of beachfront, restaurants, and shops in any given week in the summer, it’s critical that the town’s transportation system is able to handle the large influx of visitors. Central to the experience of visiting Myrtle Beach is the ability to get out of the car and enjoy the town by foot or by bike.

#10YearsofSRTS: Smart Steps and a Clear Vision

When Deb Hubsmith founded the National Partnership in 2005 – the same year that the first federal Safe Routes to School legislation was passed, authorizing funding to 50 states and the District of Columbia – her vision for the Safe Routes to School movement was much broader than the $612 million in initial funding outlined in the legislation. From the very beginning, Hubsmith believed that Safe Routes to School had the potential to transform our cities and towns into healthy, active communities where all people can walk, bicycle, and be physically active.

National Partnership Welcomes Two New Board Members

It is with great pleasure that I share some exciting news with you.  On August 3, 2015, the Safe Routes to School National Partnership voted to expand its Board of Directors and voted in two new persons to serve as board members.  Led by Board Chair Risa Wilkerson, the Board of Directors has been actively researching and working through targeted board development for the last year.  These two new members bring a wealth of experience, the willingness to roll up their sleeves and get to work as well as a commitment to the sustainability of our organization.  We truly could not be more pleased

Congress Punts Transportation Until the Fall

Margo PedrosoAfter weeks of work, the Senate passed the DRIVE Act today to reauthorize transportation policy and funding, on a vote of 65-34.  However, the House of Representatives has forced the Senate’s hand into accepting a three-month extension of current law.

A Brief History Lesson: Academic Performance and Physical Activity

This guest blog post was written by our research adviser, Christina Galardi.

academic girls

First, let’s start with a pop quiz to get your brain working - I’ll give the answers at the end.

Senate Inches Forward on Transportation Bill

Margo PedrosoWhile the clock ticks quickly towards the July 31 expiration of transportation policy and funding, the Senate has been moving quickly (well, quickly for a legislative body that prides itself on a deliberative approach) to reach resolution.

House and Senate on Different Paths for Transportation

Margo PedrosoThis summer has been a busy one for transportation.  In addition to the late June committee consideration of the DRIVE Act, both the House and Senate are moving forward on transportation.

Safe Routes to School: The Story Begins

This is the first in a series of blog posts highlighting pivotal moments in the history of the Safe Routes to School movement.

Dear Deb and Wendi: Thank you so much for creating the Safe Routes to School program sixteen years ago. It has really made a difference at Kent Middle School. I now walk to school every day I have a chance to. Sixty percent of our school now travels green, and it is truly because of the commitment you two have made. – Kent Middle School student, 2015

One Death on Our Streets is Too Many

kariIn May, a series of incomprehensible tragedies happened in the City of Portland and the surrounding region – vehicles hitting, hurting, maiming and killing people walking and riding bicycles. One crash after another.

Senate Committee Unveils DRIVE Act; Needs More to Support Bicycling and Walking

Margo PedrosoToday, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) unveiled their new six-year transportation bill.  The DRIVE Act (Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act) primarily shores up our existing interstate and road-focused transportation system.  Unsurprisingly given its name, the bill does not adequately address the needs of communities all across the country that are increasingly

The Ohio Safe Routes Academy Helps Put “Meat on the Bones” of Local Safe Routes to School Programs!

academy logoThere is no doubt that good walking and biking infrastructure is essential to successful Safe Routes to School programs. However, many communities already have “the bones” of adequate infrastructure, especially around established community-based schools in suburban and urban communities, or through completed Safe Routes to School-funded engineering projects.

Graduate Student Learns to Count on Walk and Bike to School Day

This guest blog post was written by our research adviser, Christina Galardi.

Back to the basics: even though I’ve completed college-level mathematics courses, this month I returned to elementary school for an important lesson in my 1,2,3’s.

House Rejects Amendment to Limit Safe Routes to Transit

Margo PedrosoLate in the evening of June 9, as part of the House consideration of the transportation appropriations bill, Rep. Emmer (R-MN) offered an amendment that would have banned federal dollars from being used to put in sidewalks, bike racks and lighting as part of new transit projects.  This amendment was a shortsighted attempt to prevent local jurisdictions from creating safe routes to transit.

Director's Outlook: Inform Our Strategic Direction

cass isidroDedication. Passion. Commitment. These are all words that describe our Safe Routes to School champions across the nation, as evidenced not only by the great turnout for Bike to School Day but also by the increases we continue to see in bicycling and walking to school.

Federal Transportation Bill Extended Again: Is It Groundhog’s Day?

Margo PedrosoIf you have been following our federal transportation updates for a while, this update may sound a bit like Groundhog’s Day.  Yet again, Congress has voted to extend the MAP-21 transportation law and yet again, lack of funding is the culprit. MAP-21 is the law that enables funding through the Transportation Alternatives Program for Safe Routes to School, bicycling and walking projects.

Shared Use, Joint Use, Community Use, Oh My!!!

mikaela randolphAs we are all thinking of getting more physically active this May for National Physical Fitness month, it only makes sense that we look at policies and practices to increase access to opportunities to be more physically active. This brings us to shared use, of course!

Baltimore: The Historical Ramifications of Being Cut-Off

BaltimoreIf you travel up North Mount Street between Laurens Street and Presbury Street you find the Gilmore Homes, now most infamously known as the place where Freddie Gray’s life began to slip away.  I walked up North Mount, not shocked by what I saw, but filled with dismay.  You could not go one street without a burned out home, abandoned property, or empty lot.  Three corner stores represented the only nearby neighborhood

#MoveInMay: Olympian Allyson Felix shouts out bicycling and Fire Up Your Feet

Blog by Allyson Felix, Six-time U.S. Olympic Track & Field Medalist and President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition member

Platforms: Fitness.gov, www.letsmoveschools.org, Fire Up Your Feet, USATF  

Allyson Felix

Momentum Builds for Transportation Alternatives Bill

Margo PedrosoAt the end of May, the current transportation law MAP-21 will expire unless Congress acts.  Leaders in the House and Senate are currently wrestling over their options, with Congress likely to extend the current law until at least July and possibly through the rest of the year. 

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