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News Archive

December 7, 2016

Media Contact

Andrew Barth, 303-441-1032

Trip Tracker Program sees amazing results during 2015-16 school year

Participants from five St. Vrain Valley school took 92,442 green trips

Boulder County, Colo. - Boulder
County Transportation’s Trip Tracker Program, which encourages school
communities to reduce motor vehicle traffic around schools, saw some incredible
numbers from program participants during the 2015/16 school year.

The
program was offered at five St. Vrain Valley School District (SVVSD) elementary
schools (expanded to seven for the 2016/17 school year) including Black Rock, Burlington,
Central, Fall River, and Niwot.

Over
the course of the school year, the Trip Tracker program saw an 80 percent
increase in participation (the number of trip reports made) from 2014/15 by
those who chose to get to school using alternative modes of transportation.
These modes might be things like carpooling, busing, biking, and walking, which
are referred by the program to as “green trips.” The 981 registered
participants (up 114 percent from 2014/15) made more than 92,400 green trips of
which 71 percent were made using “active modes,” which are human powered
options like biking, walking, scooting, or skating. Participants were asked to
report how they got to and from school and how far the trip was, which revealed
that approximately 87.4 million steps were taken. That’s an average of 24,000
steps per participant.

All
of the participants efforts equated to substantial reductions in cars on the
road:

  • 18,688 total car
    trips reduced
  • 28,752 car miles
    reduced
  • 26,337 pounds of
    CO2 emissions reduced from the air

These
results emphasize how a reduction in car trips reduces unsafe congestion around
schools, increases the health of participants and often additional family members
as well, and reduces air pollutants, which all benefit the entire community.

To
encourage green trips, each month participants earn “Tracker Bucks” for their
efforts. Four green trips to or from school earns a participant one Tracker
Buck. A Tracker Buck is equal to $1 that can be redeemed at numerous
participating Trip Tracker businesses all around Boulder County. During 2015/16
an average of $8 per participant per month were earned. Parent volunteers at
each school coordinated reward distributions and on-going program promotion.

Trip
Tracker businesses help make the program successful. SVVSD’s Trip Tracker business
saw more than $20,000 worth of Tracker Buck being spent locally throughout
2015/16. The Trip Tracker philosophy on participant rewards is instead of
pre-prescribing a reward to all participants, the program lets them choose rewards
meaningful to them by spending their Tracker Bucks at locally-owned
participating businesses. This means the benefits earned in the community remain
in the community, a true community based program. SVVSD’s Trip Tracker program
has seen its list of locally owned participating businesses grow from four to
more than 20, with new locations regularly coming on board. Interested locally-owned
businesses should contact the Trip Tracker Program for more information.

The
Trip Tracker Program was started several years ago by the Boulder Valley School
District (BVSD). When Boulder County Transportation’s Multimodal Division
learned of the results they were achieving it was an easy decision to help
expand the program into SVVSD. Boulder County has been in partnership ever
since with SVVSD’s Wellness Department to support program implementation. The
program is funded through state and federal grants with a county match.

“The
Trip Tracker program reduces congestion around schools, improves student
health, and reduces pollution. We thought it would also help address congestion
and safety concerns in the Longmont area schools, and we’re really happy that
St. Vrain Valley Schools are so excited about the program,” said Boulder County
Transportation Director George Gerstle. “My hope is that we can help continue
to find funds that will allow the program to grow so that students throughout
the county have the same opportunity to reduce congestion around schools and get
out of cars and get some exercise on their way to and from school. I believe
this program helps children see that it is possible to use alternative modes of
travel to go about their daily lives.”

More
information on the county’s Trip Tracker Program is available at
www.BoCoTripTracker.com.

For more information,
contact Andrew Barth, Boulder County Transportation Department, at
abarth@bouldercounty.org or 303-441-1032.

Full bike rack at Black Rock Elementary