Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Safe Routes to School


About Safe Routes to School

Walking and bicycling to school was once the way most students arrived at school, but that has since changed dramatically. Minnesota Safe Routes to School projects and programs aim to make it safer and easier for students to walk and bicycle to school.

In order to increase opportunities for children to walk and bicycle to school safely, the 2005 federal transportation bill, SAFETEA-LU, provided funding for Safe Routes to School in all 50 states. The federal Legislature created SRTS, in part, to help reverse the alarming nationwide increase in childhood obesity and inactivity. The program has numerous benefits to local communities including reducing traffic congestion, improving air quality and helping kids arrive to school focused and ready to learn.

In 2013, the state legislature allocated $250,000 per year for Safe Routes to School non-infrastructure programs. In 2014, the state legislature allocated $1 million per year to the SRTS infrastructure grant program and increased the non-infrastructure funds to $500,000 per year.

Elevating SRTS through partnerships

  • SRTS Steering Committee includes 27 active members representing cities and counties, regional planning organizations, non-profit organizations, educators and health professionals
  • Partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health and local agencies maximizes program reach and leverages resources
  • The Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota offers teacher trainings and technical assistance to schools. Sign up for fall teacher trainings, apply to host a teacher training, or request technical assistance at http://www.bikemn.org/education.

Steering Committee

In 2012, MnDOT created the SRTS Steering Committee to guide the work of MnDOT staff. The SRTS Steering Committee includes 27 active members representing cities and counties, regional planning organizations, non-profit organizations, educators, and health professionals.

The following organizations are currently represented:

  • American Cancer Society
  • American Heart Association
  • Anoka - Hennepin Schools
  • Bicycle Alliance of MN
  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of MN
  • City of Mankato
  • Department of Public Safety
  • Federal Highway Administration
  • Fond du Lac Reservation
  • Minneapolis Public Schools
  • Minnesota Department of Education
  • Minnesota Department of Education/Health
  • Minnesota Department of Health
  • MN Safety Council
  • MnDOT Bicycle and Pedestrian Section
  • MnDOT District 1
  • MnDOT District 3
  • MnDOT Office of Traffic Safety and Technology
  • MnDOT State Aid
  • Pollution Control Agency
  • Public Health Law Center
  • Red Pine Elementary School
  • St. Cloud Area Planning Organization
  • Minnesota Department of Education
  • West Central Initiative

Previous members:

  • City of Alexandria
  • Upper Minnesota Valley Regional Development Commission

In late spring 2013, the Steering Committee underwent a strategic planning process to determine MnDOT program priorities. The Steering Committee also considered SRTS activities that their individual organizations could focus on. Read the draft MnDOT SRTS Advisory Committee Strategy Planning (Word, 4 MB) summary report outlining the process and findings.