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Safe Routes to School

SRTS sign

Slow Down to 20 MPH in School Zones

School zone flashing beacons will flash in certain locations beginning January 19 as the Tacoma School District begins in-person learning. The speed limit is 20 MPH in school zones. Keep children and their families safe as they walk and roll to school by slowing down and paying special attention when driving in or near a school zone. 


Overview - Safe Routes to School

The City of Tacoma has created a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program to promote safer walking and bicycling routes for K-12 students. With this program we hope to empower students and parents to feel comfortable walking or bicycling to school, which in turn should encourage children to lead more active and healthier lifestyles.


The City has worked with the community to build a comprehensive Safe Routes to School program that includes a Safe Routes to School Action Plan that follows the 6 E's of Safe Routes to School: 

  • Education: Inform families about active transportation choices, teach walking and biking safety skills, and promote driver safety campaigns near schools.
  • Encouragement: Use events and activities to spark interest and make walking and rolling to school easy and fun. 
  • Engineering: Address the physical environment around schools to create safe and accessible places for walking and biking. 
  • Engagement: Work closely with the school community to identify challenges and address needs. Build intentional, ongoing engagement opportunities. (Note: this "E" is new as of June 2020 and is not yet reflected the SRTS Action Plan.) 
  • Equity: Reduce disparities by prioritizing schools with the highest need.
  • Evaluation: Monitor program outcomes to improve activities in the future. 

SRTS Program Documents

We have the following finalized documents available for reference and viewing.

  • 2017 SRTS Action Plan - this plan is the result of a collaboration between the Project Management Team and the Stakeholder Committee to come up with visions, goals and actions for the Tacoma SRTS program.
  • 2017 SRTS Program Toolkit - the Toolkit details specific SRTS activities that have been successful in schools around the country and can be adopted for local use.
  • 2017 SRTS Walking School Bus - implemented successfully in many schools throughout the country this is a step-by-step guide to starting a Walking School Bus or Bike Train program.  

SRTS Resources and Information

Engineering - School Infrastructure Updates

We are happy to announce that the following schools have received funding through the Safe Routes to School program.


Project Description
Estimated Start
Estimated Completion
Funding Source
First Creek Middle School  Establish a new school zone at the intersection of E. 56th St. and Portland Ave. This includes the installation of school zone flashing beacons along with education and encouragement activities  July 2020

School zone established: November 2020


Events: spring 2021

WTSC grant 
Mary Lyon Elementary School  Enhance the school designated crossing at S. 46th St. and Pacific Ave. and install curb ramps along the school walking route along S. 46th St.  June 2020


November 2020



spring 2021

WSDOT grant
Whitman Elementary School  To be determined with community November 2020   City Council 
Edison Elementary School  To be determined with community November 2020   City Council 


Be Informed, Get Involved

You can contact City Safe Routes to School Coordinator, Carrie Wilhelme by email with questions, concerns or comments.