HASTe staff were invited to teach a special topics course on active school travel at Langara College in Vancouver. This was an exciting opportunity, because although the longform of our name includes that catchall "SCHOOL", it's not often we get to work in a post-secondary environment.
The course was attended by students and faculty from the Applied Planning Program and focused on the benefits of active transportation and how it applies to planning for communities, campuses, and cities. Learn more about HASTe's approach to these topics after the break.
Of course, we were most interested in what students thought of the transportation situation at Langara, so we spent the afternoon in breakout groups discussing issues related to active travel to and from campus. Key stakeholders from the College, including staff from TravelSmart joined the class to help lead the discussion and explore potential solutions.
The session ended with a list of action items for Langara as it applies to improving active travel on and off campus. We're excited for the next steps!
Thanks again to Kathryn Nairne for the invitation and Raymond Yeung and Marriee Devereaux for participating in the workshop.
Just in time for back-to-school, PeopleForBikes recently released some interesting new statistics on youth and cycling. The news is mixed, with some really positive information:
And some related statistics that are a bit less sunny:
To see the full picture, click here.
There was a time when only environmentalists and free-range-parents would advise you to let your kids walk to school. Well, there was a time when everyone walked to school, but let's keep this 21st century.
This year, walking to school - or, even better, letting your children do so unaccompanied - officially went mainstream, with an endorsement by that venerable Canadian journalistic institution, The Globe and Mail. To be fair, the editorial notes that walking to schools is "a subversive act" and warns readers that they will "to earn the opprobrium of [their] fellow parents."
But hey, it's a start. Click here to read the full article.
This past spring, HASTe helped organize the first-ever Car Free Festivals in Vancouver for high schools. Great events to promote active travel and kick off a car-free summer. Click here to find out more.
Car Free Schools was developed as a test model for car-free events at Vancouver schools. HASTe set out to improve collaborations and partnerships on school transportation issues and to reduce driving rates to Vancouver schools, and of course, have a little fun doing it! With the help of student leaders at Sir Winston Churchill, Eric Hamber, and Windermere Secondary, each school was able to create a festival that attracted a captive student audience and promote the idea of active travel by shutting down the street to cars and opening it to creative ideas and programming.
The numbers speak for themselves:
• approximately 3000 participants at all 3 festivals
• 250 volunteers
• 120 activity leaders
• 3 core organizing teams
Each school is excited to run the event again next year and additional schools have expressed an interest in participating as well.
Thanks to all the supporting organizations who helped to make this an incredible success and we look forward to next year's events!
Read the editorial from the Metro News.
In celebration of Bike to School Week, here's a video about unlearning how to ride a bicycle, which maybe gets at some undiscovered truths about learning how to ride a bicycle... or something. Worth watching, I promise; this will blow your mind.