Through the BUSTRIP project school children in Kaunas create a School Travel Plan to promote ways their city can begin to create a safer journey to school.
Background & Objectives
As part of the BUSTRIP project, the city of Kaunas began working with two city suburb schools to help improve the students’ journey to school through the creation of a School Travel Plan (STP). The pupils attending these schools experience several difficult situational problems on their journey to school. Commuting time and distance, weather conditions, roadside safety environment, driver awareness, and other such issues can make the journey hazardous. Public transport does not reach many of the children living in higher elevations and there are rarely suitable pedestrian walkways alongside main roads.
The School Travel Plan involved research into factors relating to the journey to school in order to determine recommendations on how to address issues. These factors included the environment around the school, public transport services, road safety, air and noise pollution, and street lighting Based on ‘Safe Route to Schools’>materials provided by the British organization ‘Sustrans’, the pupils prepared qualitative and quantitative questionnaires, distributed them to their fellow pupils, and prepared the results for distribution and presentation. They also included photos to show evidence of the problems they face and included those in the STP. The overall response from the pupils was favourable in changing the way they travel in and around the city. Students were featured on a BUSTRIP ‘Car-less City’ advertisement campaign posted on trolley buses and they made a video advocating for others to change their mobility habits.
The School Travel Plan project yielded many achievements including a grant for a school exchange programme between Kaunas and Spyken School in Lund, Sweden, the presentation of the STP to the Kaunas City Council members, the design of promotional T-shirts, ‘Car-free City’ advertising campaigns on trolley buses, and the production of an informational DVD.
For more information contact, James McGeever, BUSTRIP City Coordinator in Kaunas at firstname.lastname@example.org.