Around town | September 6, 2013 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - September 6, 2013

Around town

MAPMAKER, MAPMAKER MAKE ME A MAP ... As Palo Alto rushes to become America's top bicycling destination, its students and school volunteers continue to lead the way. On Aug. 23, school officials were delighted to count 878 Gunn High School students riding their bikes to school — up from 768 on the same date last year, according to Penny Ellson, a leader of the Safe Routes to School team. "This news makes my heart sing," Ellson wrote in an email to city and school leaders. Other hearts quickly joined the happy chorus. Councilwoman Karen Holman called the latest count "unbelievably awesome"; school board member Camille Townsend wrote back, "Fantastic!"; and school district Superintendent Kevin Skelly issued a hearty congratulations to the volunteers who made the high numbers possible. The number is "super-impressive," Skelly said, particularly because Gunn's enrollment this year is within 15 students of last year. He also pointed to another welcome side effect of this trend: more open parking. "I know that it makes the hearts of Gunn administrators sing to have plenty of parking," Skelly wrote. "As we all know, nothing makes people (including teachers and students) more upset than not having enough parking. Smile." Even with the recent success, school volunteers and city officials continuing to push the the biking program into higher gear. On Monday, the City Council is set to approve a set of detailed "Walk and Roll" maps developed by the Safe Routes to School program for 10 public schools: Addison, Walter Hays, Palo Verde, Ohlone, Barron Park, Briones, Escondido, Duveneck, Terman Middle School and Gunn. Each map showcases recommended paths, current stop signs and traffic signals, parking spaces, crossing guards and estimated times for walking and biking (they are available Maps for other schools are scheduled to be completed before the end of the school year. The project was aided by a $528,000 grant from the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority.

This story contains 716 words.

If you are a paid subscriber, check to make sure you have logged in. Otherwise our system cannot recognize you as having full free access to our site.

If you are a paid print subscriber and haven't yet set up an online account, click here to get your online account activated.


Posted by Not an issue, a resident of Community Center
on Sep 7, 2013 at 1:51 pm

"MAPMAKER, MAPMAKER MAKE ME A MAP ... As Palo Alto rushes to become America's top bicycling destination,"
Does the weekly actually read what they write or they just being cheerleaders for the bike coalition? We know they are cheerleaders for the council , already.
Where do,they get this " America's top bicycling destination" ? Why would anyone come here to just ride a bike?
Maybe instead of wasting time trying to one up other cities, maybe our city should focus on local problems and stop trying to show the world how to do things.
It would also help if the weekly would not enable these egotistical individulas by writing garbage opening lines.

Posted by parent, a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2013 at 3:55 pm

We love that Palo Alto is putting in the time and effort to make our streets safer for bicycling and walking. If we were just going to drive everywhere, we may as well live in a cheap ugly suburb in the East Bay. Studies have shown that cities with safe routes for pedestrians and bicyclists are healthier, happier, and have higher home values.

Posted by Not an issue, a resident of Community Center
on Sep 7, 2013 at 4:27 pm

I won't argue with some of your points, parent. But why do it to become a top bicycling destination-- why not do it for the people of palo alto??? Why does ego trump public good?
And why insult the east bay?????? People live their-- it is their home. Of course, some people in palo alto,think our city is something special.

Posted by parent, a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2013 at 4:40 pm

I think that "bicycling destination" headline is just dumb. Palo Alto is not trying to become a "bicycling destination". Palo Alto is trying to make its streets safer for residents bicycling to work, school, and around town. Palo Alto will never be a bicycling destination like central Italy or southern France or even Napa Valley.

Posted by Van Daan, a resident of College Terrace
on Sep 8, 2013 at 7:52 pm

Do not forget Dwnmark and the Netherlnds,