Research and Results
Review results and related research for the Canadian School Travel Planning model.
School Travel Planning in the City of Toronto & Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph
A feasibility study conducted between April 2014 and November 2015.
Benefits and Costs of School Travel Plannning
The Benefits and Costs of School Travel Planning (STP) in Ontario, Canada: In 2013 the first benefit-cost analysis of School Travel Planning was undertaken by Green Communities, Metrolinx and the University of Toronto. In 2015 a second Benefit-Cost study was completed by Green Communities and the University of Toronto which provided updates to the benefit-cost tools and added to the growing body of evidence that STP is a cost-effective model for the implementation of active school travel initiatives. The associated tools for the Benefit-Cost Anaylsis are now available in the STP toolkit.
2015 Study Results: Full Report
Children’s Mobility, Health and Happiness: School Travel Planning
Results from Canadian schools participating in the 27 month national project entitled “Children’s Mobility, Health and Happiness: A Canadian School Travel Planning Model” funded through the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer’s CLASP (Coalitions Linking Action and Science for Prevention) initiative and the Public Health Agency of Canada.
This project has expanded School Travel Planning across Canada, amplified work with the University of Toronto on links between School Travel Planning and the built environment, and introduced and applied Cape Breton University’s ground-breaking research into the links between active transportation, sustainable happiness, education and health.
Download the Executive Summary.
Final report video - please click on 'download' for the clearest resolution. Sound is included so do check speakers before this is played.
School Travel Planning Results in 10 Ontario Communities
School Travel Planning in Action in Ontario: Successes and Lessons in Active and Sustainable School Transportation a report prepared by Metrolinx and Green Communities Canada. This report showcases 10 Ontario communities who have implemented School Travel Planning initiatives. Read the report in French here.
Learn about the Stepping It Up project led by Metrolinx. The active school travel project implemented School Travel Planning at 15 schools in Hamilton and 15 schools in the Region of Peel.
STP Pilot project
Green Communities Canada’s International Best Practices document informed the Canadian School Travel Planning pilot test, which itself was funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada. The pilot test established best practices in Canada and set the foundation for current projects across the nation – refer to the Canadian School Travel Planning Pilot Test Final Report.
Best practice in School Travel Planning
In 2006, Green Communities Canada published a Review of International School Travel Planning Best Practices. This research was funded by Transport Canada's Moving on Sustainable Transportation (MOST) initiative. In March 2010, Green Communities Canada updated the document with funding from Metrolinx and Transport Canada's ecoMOBILITY program Update.
We have provided links to related research documents and websites here:
School Travel Safety in the City of Toronto
There has been very little research conducted in Canada related to both reducing pedestrian collisions AND increasing active school transportation. A team of researchers and medical doctors at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, York University and the University of Toronto, Mississauga are conducting a program of research to better understand the benefits and risks of walking and wheeling to school. The document lists a series of studies that have examined built environment factors, vehicle vs. child pedestrian crashes, the role of adult crossing guards, driver behaviour at school drop-off, parent perceptions of traffic danger and the effectiveness of some common traffic calming techniques. For more information on this research please contact Linda Rothman at 416-736-2100 ext. 77211.
Active School Travel Stakeholder Survey: Report
Click on the infographic below to read the Active School Travel Stakeholder Survey Results. This survey was conducted in February 2015, by Green Communities Canada, on behalf of the Heart and Stroke Foundation.
ParticipACTION Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card
2015 ParticipACTION Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. The overall grade for Canadian children and youth remains at a D- for the third year in a row. Overall, only 9% of 5-17 year olds are getting the 60 minutes of heart-pumping activity they need each day. And sadly, the grade for Active Transportation remains a D, with 24% of 5-17 year olds walking/wheeling to school and 62% being driven by parents or caregivers.
The 2015 Report Card reveals that kids move more when they are outside and have some freedom to roam unsupervised. But, our tendency to constantly watch over them or keep them indoors to ensure they are safe from risk limits their opportunities for physical activity, endangering their long-term health.
The Report Card has been developed annually since 2005. View the archived Report Cards.
Saving Money and Time with Active School Travel
Saving Money and Time with Active School Travel (Ontario): Executive Summary and Full Document. Results of research into funding for active school transportation. Results indicated that an investment of $10 per Ontario student would create safer and healthier opportunities for students to travel to and from school.
A Metrolinx 2011 Study of 1,000 GTHA parents gathered further information about the barriers and opportunities regarding active and sustainable transportation to and from schools.
Tools of Change
ASRTS Tools of Change Landmark Case Study.
University of Toronto
University of Toronto's Project BEAT.
Sustainable Happiness and the Trip to School
Sustainable Happiness and the Trip to School (as published in World Transport Policy & Practice).
Guidelines to Active School Travel Actions
See Child, Youth, and Environments that links specific Guidelines to Active School Travel Actions.
Canadian schools are closing at an alarming rate in favour of larger, multi-purpose schools on the edges of communities, resulting in routes that are beyond a reasonable walking distance. For information on school siting:
- School Siting & School Site Design for a Healthy Community, prepared for the City of Hamilton, August 2012
- Design Guidelines for School Site and Adjacent Lands Planning, prepared by Halton Stakeholders Technical Sub-Committe, May 2011
- An interesting perspective on school closure from Dr. David Gordon, Queen's University
- University of Waterloo's School Closures Policy Research, led by Dr. Mark Seasons
- A discussion paper prepared by Nova Scotia’s Ecology Action Centre
- US Environmental Protection Agency School Siting Guidelines
- U.S. National Trust for Historic Preservation: Helping Johnny Walk to School