Safe Routes To School


Kids learning to move and be physically active as part of ordinary life – like going to school! – and then inspiring their parents, teachers, principals, neighbors, community to do the same is, in our opinion, a powerful means to sustainable well-living and healthfulness.

Independent, happy, confident, ready to learn youth are empowered to be guardians of their health, develop lifelong habits to move more and sit less and be leaders in their community.

Norte administers Traverse City’s Safe Routes To School programs in partnership with Traverse City Area Public Schools, Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools and other neighborhood schools in TC. What began as our co-founders inviting a couple neighborhood kids to pedal to school with them has grown into a comprehensive, community-wide initiative.

Our programs, projects and events are dedicated to empowering elementary and middle school students to actively get themselves to school.

 The benefits of walking and biking to school are many, of course:

  • better concentration in class
  • less traffic congestion near schools
  • improved cognitive abilities
  • stronger sense of community
  • more exercise
  • safer streets: communities with the higher walk/bike rates have lower crash rates for all travel modes
  • a distraction-free time to connect with families and classmates
  • less air pollutants from automobiles

Passionate about kids getting themselves to YOUR school? Get involved!

  • Ideas on what should be done to make your school more walkable/bikeable? What safety concerns do you see around your school? How can we better encourage and empower more kids to actively get themselves to your school?


  • Fridays Fantástico: A weekly celebration of students walking, biking and rolling to school.
  • The Great Northern Michigan Bike Train Experiment: A community-wide network of adult-led bike train connecting schools in northern Michigan.
  • Winter Walk Wednesdays: A #StepItUp inspired celebration of people – big or small – walking to work, school or just for FUN! in Traverse City.
  • Park & Stroll: For those students who attend a school of choice or live too far away from their home school. Drive. Park. Walk 5 minutes to school. Easy.
  • Bike2Bus: Portable bike racks at neighborhood bus stops and mapping of safe routes to these racks to encourage “biking to bus”.
  • The Bike Mas Project: An adventure-based after-school empowerment program for upper elementary students.
  • El Barrio Bike Fix: A pop-up bike fix and learn-to-wrench program.
  • Estrellas: A learn-to-ride program for preschoolers using balance bikes.
  • Norte Bike Library: Ensuring that awesome kids have awesome bikes to pedal to school no matter their family’s resources.


Partner schools:

Current list of Norte Bike Trains:

We’re dreaming big to make walking/biking/rolling to school the new normal in northern Michigan but we need mucho quality big people to make it happen. Helping kids actively get to school is both easier and awesome’er than you think. Get involved HERE.

Eastern’s Park & Stroll Map (currently not in use as Eastern is a Bertha Vos during reconstruction):

STRS infrastructure projects in progress:

Community Partners: