School Traffic Control Plans

The traffic control plan at Mason Elementary School in Georgia includes improvements to the signing as well as crosswalk and pavement markings.

A comprehensive traffic control plan can help create a balanced roadway environment to accommodate the needs of all modes of transportation, be it by foot, bicycle or motor vehicle. A traffic control plan is a map of a school campus and the adjacent street system marked with proposed engineering improvements to increase the safety of bicyclists and pedestrians.

Putting It Into Practice: Traffic Control Plan

Sabin Elementary, Portland, OR

As a result of a technical analysis of pedestrian safety around Portland Schools, the City Traffic Calming program identified Sabin Elementary as a high priority for traffic calming measures.

The school, with 500 children enrolled, is served by a traditional grid street pattern with north-south and east-west arterials. Some of the problems affecting the area included traffic congestion during pick-up and drop-off areas and unsafe pedestrian crossings.

In order to start the planning process, the City staff created the Sabin School Safety Committee along with key stakeholders. Among people involved in the Committee were the school principal, community members, the school PTA, and Portland Police, among others. The Committee identified major problems to work on, developed goals, and adopted the specific objectives of decreasing speeds on the north-south arterials, increasing visibility at key intersections, and improving crossing safety at two east-west arterial streets. Community feedback on the program was gauged through an open house, as well as a survey distributed to properties near the proposed improvement sites.

Once community concerns were addressed, the City conducted a pilot program of temporary improvements to see how they would affect driving conditions in the area. The pilot program demonstrated positive traffic calming and pedestrian safety effects, and the City went forward with the final permanent program. The total cost for the project was $54,000.

After the traffic calming measures were made permanent, two-way car conflicts have been reduced and pedestrian safety has increased. Discussions with nearby residents indicate that traffic congestion has decreased, as have dangerous conditions during the opening and closing of school (PEDSAFE, 2013).