December 17


Minimizing the Impacts of School Traffic

By Mike Spack

December 17, 2007

school safety, school safety plan, school traffic, transporation

By Mike Spack, PE, PTOE

This component of the School Traffic Safety Plan requires working with the city engineering department and possibly hiring a consultant traffic engineer. The plan will analyze the operations of the school’s driveways onto the public street system and the nearby public street intersections.

Possible outcomes could be:

  • Installing signs per Chapter 7 of the Federal Highway Administration’s Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices which covers traffic control specific to school areas
  • Adding turn lanes
  • Changing stop sign configurations
  • Changing pavement markings
  • Banning certain turning maneuvers (to eliminate a “shortcut”)
  • Adding a traffic signal
  • Changing the operation of a traffic signal
  • Constructing a roundabout
  • Constructing traffic calming measures such as speed bumps
  • Adding pedestrian ramps at intersections
  • Constructing trails or sidewalks
  • Building “bumpouts” to extend the sidewalks toward each other at intersections to shorten the crossing distance

Links to Each of the 7 Components of an Effective School Safety Plan

  1. Documenting Existing Transportation Systems at Schools
  2. Minimizing Vehicle and Student Interaction – A Look at Loading Zones
  3. Minimizing the Impacts of School Traffic
  4. Increasing Student Visibility in School Zones
  5. Slowing Down Traffic in School Zones
  6. Controlling Arrivals and Departures at Schools
  7. Traffic Safety Education for Students


  • Observing the surroundings that the school I volunteer work with, I find that there might need to be either a stop sign/stop light implemented a couple or so blocks from school. I observed students are walking more than the two blocks away from school. These need to be put to provide school safety for the students as cars drive faster than the required speed at the street.

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    Mike Spack

    My mission is to help traffic engineers, transportation planners, and other transportation professionals improve our world.

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