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Safe and Active Routes to School (SAARTS)

Safe and Active Routes to School is a twelve-month pilot project (July 2021 – June 2022) in the Figtree area involving kids, parents, schools, P&Cs and other partners to create community change.

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In 2022 the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) World Road Cycling Championships are coming to Wollongong and the city is the only city in the Southern Hemisphere to have been bestowed the prestigious UCI Bike City Label status. So why then, do so few children ride (or walk) to school?

According to the 2020 NSW School Safety Survey:

  • Cars speed in the school zone
  • Footpaths are unsafe, dangerous or don’t exist
  • There are not enough safe crossings on the way to school
  • Traffic congestion creates an unsafe environment

77% of children do not meet the daily requirements for physical activity – 44% of children in the Keira electorate travel to school by car while only 6% cycle!

We joined forces with other key stakeholders and came up with a plan to look at all the issues and address them one by one! We pitched our project idea to the UCI Legacy Grant Committee and were successfully awarded $20,000 to pilot our community approach to ensure that the legacy of the World Champs, means more than just a label.  Check out our pitch presentation, and examples of the street environment we need to address.

Safe and Active Routes to School UCI Legacy Pitch

Key Facilitating Partners:

Jon Lindley – Safe Streets to School Wollongong
Lena Huda – 30please.org

Key Participating Schools and P&Cs:

Mt St Thomas PS
Figtree Heights PS
Lindsay Park PS

Other Key Project Partners:

Ride Nation
Jules Verheyen
Early Start, UOW
Wollongong Police
Transport for NSW
NSW Department of Education (Road Safety Education)
Wollongong City Council

“Safe and Active Routes to school is a whole of community approach to making it safer, and more preferable for kids to walk and cycle to school.”

SAARTS