Safe Routes To School in Long Lake

We’re excited to announce that we’re about to take the first few steps towards applying for a Safe Routes To School infrastructure grant that would address traffic congestion and walk/bike barriers in and around Westwoods and Long Lake Elementary.

We believe outcomes of this grant will result in a better place not only for Long Lake children but all township residents. A township that is healthier, happier and better connected.

The systematic Safe Routes To School approach starts with conducting walking and biking audits, evaluating needs, surveying parents, school staff, and students, and developing an action plan. Funds are made available to improve and build bike lanes, sidewalks, crosswalks, trails, lighting etc., as well as funding for important education and encouragement programs to ensure that this new infrastructure is well used.

We believe the following are some of the positive outcomes and reasons for supporting this grant:

  1. Creating a walking and bicycling culture sets habits for an active, healthy lifestyle beginning at an early age.
  2. The planning, development, and implementation of projects will reduce traffic congestion and fuel consumption, reduce air pollution in the vicinity of schools, and create safer streets as bike/walk rates increase.
  3. All of the many positive benefits that come from actively transporting yourself to school such as:
  • better concentration in class
  • improved cognitive abilities
  • stronger sense of community and understanding of the built environment
  • learning to safely navigate around our community
  • more physical activity
  • increased confidence, empowerment and independence
  1. We believe it is the right of all children to be able to walk and bike to school safely.
  2. A lack of physical activity plays a leading role in rising rates of obesity, diabetes and other health problems among children. Engaging in active transportation to and from school builds activity into daily routines.

Learn more about the Safe Routes To School grant process HERE.

Good news! 
  1. On December 12th, the Long Lake Board of Trustees unanimously voted in support of moving ahead with a Safe Routes To School infrastructure grant. Thank you to all of you who attended the meeting and sent letters.
  2. In early May, successful walking audits were completed at both schools.
What’s next?
  1. A community-wide action planning meeting will be on June 1st at the Long Lake Township Hall at 4:30 pm. Parents, students, and community members are welcome to put walking audit observations into action.
  2. Parent and student surveys.
  3. In-school travel tallies.
 We encourage Long Lake residents, business owners, and especially families with children who attend Westwoods and Long Lake schools, to get involved with this important project.

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