The School Area Traffic Control Policy (SATCP), includes the Adult Crossing Guard program, is the result of a long public process to develop, and implement, the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Plan.

The School Area Traffic Control (SATCP) policy updates and replaces the School Crossing Control Policy (SCCP) last updated in July 2008 (Res. 6777). The City has used the SCCP as a guideline for installing/maintaining traffic control devices and crossing guards at elementary school crossing areas. In 2015, the need to update the policy was identified, particularly to improve the process of requests and changes to traffic control around schools. The revisions in the SATCP include the highlighted changes:

  • Addition of middle schools
  • Addition of new traffic control devices: Pedestrian Hybrid Beacons and Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons
  • Evaluation criteria for Adult Crossing Guards uses the same technical criteria to establish guards, but adds criteria to install crossing guards in ‘potential locations’ and allows existing crossing guard locations that meet 80% of the criteria to have an additional year for evaluations. The policy also prioritizes guards on established safe routes and establishes routine evaluation to adapt to changes in built-environment and school boundaries
  • Addition of Safe Routes to School Maps for Encouraging kids to walk and wheel, Planning for Infrastructure improvements and Traffic and Parking Circulation on the school site.
  • Establishes processes to request elements and to allow evaluation by the SRTS Working Group, which includes the City of Lawrence, USD 497, Lawrence – Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Organization and Lawrence – Douglas County Public Health)

Adopting the School Area Traffic Control Policy is an action item in the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Plan to address concerns associated with traffic control around schools and the safety of intersections and crossings, which were identified in the 2019 Parent Survey. The School Area Traffic Control Policy can be found here.

Adult Crossing Guards

View the map of Lawrence SRTS routes and crossing guard locations.

USD 497 Elementary School SRTS Maps

USD 497 Middle School SRTS Maps

How we got here

During the Safe Routes to School Plan (See pages 36-39 and Appendix C) planning process, all existing and requested adult crossing guard locations for USD 497 were evaluated against the warrant (thresholds) criteria in the School Area Traffic Control Policy. The warrants evaluate several criteria to determine if a crossing guard is necessary, including the average number of students crossing, the number of safe gaps in traffic, the speed of traffic, and if the intersection is a controlled intersection (meaning it has a stop sign or traffic signal). Many crossing locations had not been re-evaluated since they were originally placed, and in that time many school boundaries and student population densities changed. During the public engagement process, we heard from parents that safety at crossings was a key concern. The primary goal of the evaluation of existing and requested crossing guards is to ensure crossing guard resources are being allocated responsive to the changing student crossing needs.

The Safe Routes to School planning process evaluated 28 total intersections to determine if they met warrants for crossing guard placement. This data was included in the SRTS plan and, based on the analysis and public feedback, the City made the recommendations that an updated adult crossing guard program should be established to regularly evaluate adult crossing guard locations, and crossing guards should only be placed along designated routes. The resulting School Area Traffic Control Policy and Adult Crossing Guard placement recommendations implements the SRTS plan recommendations.

Interactive Map

Links

The Lawrence-Douglas County Safe Routes to School Program is a partnership with Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health. View the Be Active Safe Routes site find school maps.

View the Safe Routes to School Plan.

Find out more about the Safe Routes to School built environment improvements.

Learn about what the City and Lawrence Public Schools does to promote school safety.