Build it and they will walk and bike: youth, government, and developer collaborate for expedited infrastructure changes

Author: Kevin Anderson, Center for Climate Protection

“They already made those changes?” a student excitedly asked during a recent discussion in Mrs. Marika Ramsden’s One Planet Living class at Credo High School in Rohnert Park. There were a number of Credo students surprised to find that some of their very own recommendations for bike and pedestrian-related infrastructure changes, made only last fall, had already been completed.

First, a little background on the project. Over the past couple school years as part of an Active Transportation Planning grant, ECO2school, in partnership with W-Trans Engineering, has been conducting Walk Audits at eleven public high school campuses throughout Sonoma County. Walk Audits involve the systematic gathering of information about environmental conditions around a school that impact students’ ability to bike or walk safely and easily to and from campus. This information is gathered through a community process that encourages various stakeholders to participate.

Credo’s Walk Audit took place last Spring with a handful students and teachers participating in the first inspection. Engineers then compiled a list of their infrastructure recommendations. We organized multiple follow-up meetings last Fall with students, parents, administration, Rohnert Park Public Works and Police, and community members reviewing the first round of initial recommendations and contributing their perspectives.

Students, staff, admin, and engineers conduct the initial Walk Audit

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