Contact: Catherine Higgins Fay LimCommunications Specialist II Communications SupervisorCatherine.Higgins@snoco.org Fay.Lim@snoco.org (425) 388-3053 (425) 388-6413
Snohomish County Elementary Students Benefit from Newly Constructed Walkways and Enhanced Crosswalks in Safe Kid, Improved Pathways (SKIP) Program
Snohomish County Continues Its’ Focus on Pedestrian Safety as Program Wraps-up Second Year of Construction
EVERETT, Wash., Oct. 20, 2015 – Newly constructed walkways and enhanced crosswalks are improving student safety near elementary schools throughout Snohomish County. The county’s Safe Kids, Improved Pathways (SKIP) Program completed 65% of its 26 projects and the rest of this year’s scheduled projects will be done by early November. The SKIP Program, in partnership with eight local school districts, designs and funds projects that provide children with safe and accessible pathways to schools within unincorporated Snohomish County.
Snohomish County Public Works completed 17 walkways, sidewalks, and maintenance projects this year. In addition, the county is currently installing nine Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacons (RRFB) around local elementary schools. RRFBs are pedestrian activated flashing LED lights that create a warning for drivers at non-signalized intersections.
“The SKIP Program has facilitated safe and connected pathways in the vicinity of 13 schools throughout the county,” said Snohomish County Executive John Lovick. “We’ve received comments on the county’s Facebook page and emails from families around the county who are happy to see and are using the roadway improvements in their neighborhoods. Positive feedback truly motivates us in continuing this annual program as we are already evaluating 10 potential project sites for construction in 2016.”
The SKIP Program was initiated in 2013 with the creation of an inventory of walking routes within a one-mile radius around selected unincorporated county elementary schools. By the end of 2015, a total of 48 projects will be completed - 22 in 2014 and 26 in 2015.
These projects have benefited an estimated 1,503 students with the addition of more than four and a half miles of school walking routes. Along popular walking routes there are now wider shoulders or sidewalk areas for kids to walk on and improved pick-up / drop-off locations along school bus routes.
Types of projects the SKIP Program provides includes:• Clearing of vegetation along roadways and adding compact gravel• Widening and paving of shoulders with asphalt• Adding curbs, gutters, and sidewalks• Installing pedestrian beacons• Building raised crosswalks to increase visibility of pedestrians while slowing motorist
If you would like to suggest an elementary school pathway improvement, contact your school’s transportation office or Snohomish County Public Works Deputy Director and County Engineer, Owen Carter at (425) 388-6460 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about the SKIP Program, go to http://snohomishcountywa.gov/SKIP.
About Snohomish County Public WorksThe Snohomish County Public Works Department employs approximately 600 staff members that develop and maintain county roads; control and manage surface water quantity, quality, and fish habitats; and oversee the recycling and disposal of solid waste. The department’s main office is located at 3000 Rockefeller Ave., Everett, WA 98201. For more information about Snohomish County Public Works, visit www.snohomishcountywa.gov/PublicWorks.