Thursday, February 23, 2012

More on Winter Walking

A few months ago I wrote about the challenges pedestrians in snowy cities face each winter, and what some cities are trying to do about them. It might be springtime already here in LA, but there are still plenty of places struggling with the white stuff. Chicago recently launched the City of Big Shovels campaign to try to encourage sidewalk shoveling through public praise or, well, humiliation. According to the site:

"City of Big Shovels is a grassroots campaign to improve the City’s winter walkability by highlighting the importance of the well-shoveled sidewalk. Taking its cue from the famously effective Don’t Mess With Texas anti-litter campaign, City of Big Shovels puts a wry spin on the issue by appealing to Chicagoans’ rough and ready spirit and latent winter pride."

The site features photos (submitted by the public) of "snow angels"--who keep their sidewalks snow-free and safe for pedestrians-- and "snow flakes"--who don't.

Elsewhere in the country, Safe Routes to School are still going strong despite cold weather. If you'd like to learn how they do it, the Safe Routes Coaching Action Network will be presenting a webinar on February 28 at 10 am PST about Making the Cold Cool: Keeping Your SRTS Program Going During the Winter. From SRTS:

In this sixty minute webinar, Taylor Lonsdale the State SRTS Coordinator  for Montana, will provide an overview of the issues associated with winter walking and cycling and discuss why it is important to keep your SRTS program running through the  coldest months.   Jenna Zdunek, Health and Wellness Director for the Marquette, (MI)  YMCA,  will then explain how the Sandy Knoll Elementary School SRTS Program was able to overcome the administration's fears associated with winter walking.   She will also discuss how the School is addressing the problem of snowy sidewalks with their "School Shoveling Project."  And finally, Kerry Ott, the Manistique Community Coordinator - Strategic Alliance for Health, Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians, will provide three  specific examples of how to make the challenges of winter walking fun and positive through the use of creative programs like  their "Golden Shovel Award," the "Scoop and Sculpt," and snow removal flash mobs.

Register here.

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