Parents Demand Safe Walk to School (Photos)

EdgemoorLaneFrontandBackTo mark National Walk to School day, the Action Committee for Transit (ACT) will leaflet at the intersection of Arlington Road and Edgemoor Lane the morning of October 9 to advocate making it safer for children to walk to school.

Wendy Leibowitz, a Bethesda Elementary School parent, will join the leafleting effort at 8:30 a.m. “The county is spending thousands of dollars to bus children a few blocks because the streets are so unsafe.” she said.

“The steps to safer streets around our school are clear and inexpensive. If the county made a few of those changes, there would be less need for buses, and we’d have healthier children who can walk to school and back.”

In February, a baby in a stroller and her mother were hit in a marked crosswalk at the intersection of Arlington Road and Edgemoor Lane, one block from Bethesda Elementary School. Parents and safety advocates sent the Montgomery County Department of Transportation a letter on May 7 listing ten low-cost ways to make the county’s streets safer for walking to school. According to ACT, almost five months later, as National Walk to School Day approaches, MCDOT director Arthur Holmes still has not replied.

The ten low cost steps to make walking and bicycling to and from school safer and more convenient for children proposed by ACT are:

  1. Amend Montgomery County’s criteria for school zones to include all roads under county jurisdiction within a half-mile radius of a school.
  2. Establish a maximum speed limit of 20 mph during school hours (including arrival and dismissal) on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  3. Double the fines for speeding violations on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  4. Put in leading pedestrian intervals for traffic signals at signalized intersections where at least one of the roads is an arterial, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  5. At intersections with traffic signals and pedestrian pushbuttons, have the walk signal displayed at every signal cycle during school hours (including arrival and dismissal), either by putting the signals in pedestrian “recall” during school hours or by removing the pedestrian pushbuttons, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  6. Retime the traffic signals during school hours (including arrival and dismissal) such that the wait for a walk signal on any leg of the intersection is never longer than 40 seconds, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  7. Use a walking speed of 2.5 feet per second to calculate the minimum pedestrian clearance interval at traffic signals, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  8. Prohibit right turns on red during school hours (including arrival and dismissal), on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  9. Mark all crosswalks with a ladder or zebra crosswalk, using material embedded with retroreflective glass beads, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.
  10. Narrow all travel lanes to 10 feet wide, on all roads under county jurisdiction in school zones.

For a summary of the reasoning behind these recommendations and cost projections see, “Make Walking to School Safe in Montgomery County” on the Act website.

Edgemoor and Arlington Road Bethesda

 

Walk to School Day Set for Oct 9 (Video)

CRTW#129_Walk_to_School_pic_10_05_12

International Walk to School Day is Oct. 9 and county officials are urging residents to participate and organize an event at their local school. This year, the County’s focus school for the event will be Kensington Parkwood Elementary School, 4710 Saul Road. Last year, 47 schools in the County participated. International Walk to School Day […]

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Parents Demand Safe Walk to School (Photos)

walk to school for featured image

To mark National Walk to School day, the Action Committee for Transit (ACT) will leaflet at the intersection of Arlington Road and Edgemoor Lane the morning of October 9 to advocate making it safer for children to walk to school. Wendy Leibowitz, a Bethesda Elementary School parent, will join the leafleting effort at 8:30 a.m. […]

Read more

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