Active School Travel
The City of Vaughan's Active School Travel pilot program promotes any form of human-powered travel, such as walking or wheeling (including the use of assistive mobility devices), cycling, rollerblading or skateboarding to get to and from school.
In collaboration with York Region, York Region Catholic District School Board, York Region District School Board, York Region Public Health and York Regional Police, this program is designed to:
- Enhance road safety and help manage vehicle congestion around school zones.
- Educate and raise awareness among the community about the benefits of active and sustainable travel.
- Improve air quality in school zones by reducing pollution and greenhouse gases made by vehicles.
- Improve students’ physical and mental health, social development and academic performance.
- Build lifelong habits of active and independent mobility.
- Raise awareness of road safety being a shared value and responsibility.
- Encourage students to reap the benefits of Active School Travel while having fun.
To support local schools in promoting safe and active transportation, the program utilizes a combination of tools to get the community involved. From May 2022 to June 2023, the Active School Travel pilot program ran in eight schools across all five of Vaughan's wards.
Participating schools received Active School Travel banners that were displayed outside the building. Mobile signage was also placed at major intersections surrounding the schools to raise awareness. In addition, promotional items and swag were provided to the schools, so students who participated in the program could be rewarded. Other engaging initiatives, such as ‘Walking Wednesday’s,’ ‘Winter Walk Days’ and involving key stakeholders like York Regional Police, were used to get students involved.
Alongside these activities, traffic calming measures were implemented and improved to ensure safer school zones. These include, but are not limited to:
- installation of radar message boards
- installation of flexi posts
- installation wayfinding signage
- improvement or introduction of school zone pavement markings
As part of the Safer School Zones Plan, a comprehensive review of the Active School Travel pilot program is underway. Through this plan, and with ongoing collaboration with program partners, the City will continue to find ways to enhance and expand Active School Travel in Vaughan.
Safe school zones and the well-being of citizens remains a top priority. The City continues to collaborate with stakeholders and leverage partnerships to raise awareness, share information and promote active and sustainable travel, as road safety is a shared value and responsibility.