During semester 11 (October 2021 – March 2022) School Chance project partners worked on the identification of solutions to new issues emerged in the framework of COVID_19 pandemics:
• School mobility modes: sustainable mobility modes, such as walking and cycling, have been surpassed by an increase in the use of private vehicles travels, at expense of public transport;
• Configuration of public space around schools, which had to be enlarged and adapted to provide physical distance and safety, thus satisfying the changes in families' behaviour and socialization habits while accompanying or waiting for their children in the entrance and exit hours.
The discussion developed through a specific Partner Meeting Group, which gave partners the chance to explain to others the new mobility school context in each region and to work on solutions with the use of new methodologies, tools, and procedures already implemented during the pandemic.
Each partner identified a Good Practice to present and realized an audiovisual tool to exchange the solutions in the two Transfer webinar in March. The Transfer webinars are the occasion for each partner to both share their Good practices and to learn from the experience of others, discuss issues and implementation and figure out how to transfer such good practices in their cities.
The first transfer webinar took place on the 16th of March, online, where 3 good practices have been presented by Reggio Emilia, Barcelona, and Girona.
Municipality of Reggio Emilia
The Municipality of Reggio Emilia presented the Good Practice "Bike to Work", a project co-founded by the Emilia-Romagna Region which consists of a kilometric incentive (equal to 20 cents per km for a maximum of €50 per month) granted to employees of companies/institutions/schools in the Reggio Emilia for home-work journeys made by bicycle. The project aimed at incentivizing the use of bicycles instead of private cars or other means of transport.
Schools are strong attractors of traffic in the working days, especially during peak hours, and the school staff (teachers, office staff, technicians, is very numerous and regular in its schedules. The project aims to incentivize the use of bicycles for workers, including school staff, to decrease the use of private cars. The project sees the involvement of 600 active employees, for a total of 40 mobility management agreements signed by the Municipality.
Municipality of Barcelona
Barcelona presented the project “Let’s protect schools”, which aims at reaching the goal of 1 of every 3 schools in the city will have traffic-calmed, safe, and lively surroundings by the end of 2023. The main point is to make schools a priority for all actions to transform public spaces to pacify the city. The objectives of the project are to improve environmental quality, the comfort of public spaces, road safety, increase visualization and involve communities in the configuration and use of public spaces.
In 2022, 218 schools executed schools surroundings, with a benefit for 80.000 students. The schools have been identified following some criteria such as road safety problems detected by Local Police, centers with educational needs, schools from 0 to 12 years, schools selected by the Districts, and schools with high environmental pollution.
Different typologies of intervention have been put into place, like school streets, xamfer enlargement, sidewalk enlargement, and habitability improvement.
Municipality of Girona
Girona presented the Good Practice "Friendly shopper", which consists of a network of shops that meet the demands of children when they go to school. The objective is to get children to be more independent on the way to school, thus avoiding the use of the private car, making the route safer through the use of the network “Friendly Shoppers” as a support for them.
Each Friendly shopper has a sticker and a sign with the logo of the project, to inform the children that they are part of the network.
The pilot project started with 1 school and 43 shops, while this year it has been extended to another school and 27 more shops in two different neighborhoods. The aim is to extend the project to many schools and neighborhoods as possible, to make children more independent and reduce means of transport like cars, motorbikes in rush-traffic hours.
The second Transfer Webinar will take place on the 30th of March and will be the occasion to present other Good Practices from the project’s partners. Stay tuned!