Press Release


May 20, 2009

Discovering Safe Routes to School in Woodbridge

Woodbridge, New Jersey—A “walkability” assessment will be conducted at 9 am on Saturday, May 30th the 16 Woodbridge Township Elementary Schools in an effort to find and map the safe routes for children to walk to school. Through a collaboration between Woodbridge Township, the Pioneering Healthier Communities (PHC) team, VERTICES, and active citizens, students and parents will learn about what makes a place walkable, and conduct fieldwork to assess the walkability of the surrounding neighborhoods. In the future, township officials will use the assessments to enhance safety routes to school.

Families and community leaders will utilize the latest information technology to create interactive maps of the assessed environment. On the maps, observations will be documented in words, photos, and YouTube videos of what participants deem notable. The information will allow the young community investigators and their parents to determine and recommend the safest means to travel to school. The map will use a fun educational experience for children to assist other children and pedestrians as they seek to navigate the Woodbridge community.

When completed, this project will:

  • Raise community awareness of opportunities for safe walking and biking
  • Improve the health of residents by promoting physical activity in safer and more pleasant walking and biking environments
  • Help the community to assess their needs and set priorities to make our streets and sidewalks safer
  • Educate children on the type of development that promotes a healthy and safe lifestyle.
  • Maximize public participation and build community pride

Organizers will need volunteers on May 30 and in follow-up evaluations. To register as a volunteer contact, and for more information about the project, visit the BikenWalk Web site at


Pioneering Healthier Communities was launched by YMCA of USA as a key component of Activate America in July 2004. Pioneering Healthier Communities drives policy, structural, and environmental change in communities to promote healthy lifestyles. The Pioneering Healthier Communities Woodbridge, New Jersey Team is comprised of members from the Woodbridge YMCA, Office of the Mayor of Woodbridge Township, the Woodbridge Municipal Alliance, Metuchen, Edison Woodbridge YMCA, Raritan Bay Medical Center, Woodbridge Township Board of Education and the Woodbridge Township School D

Developed by VERTICES