17/02/2017 – Sint-Katelijne-Waver wants to update the school route map, but especially digitalise it. The municipality and Route2school are joining forces for this.
“Making new school route maps was something that we had planned for a long time, but we feared that the paper version would be dated soon”, says counsellor of Mobility Tom Ongena (Samen Anders) in Gazet van Antwerpen. ”That is why we decided to focus more on the digital aspect and soon came in contact with Route2school, a project of the Transportation Research Institute (Hasselt University) that analyses the road safety of school routes throughout Flanders.”
In the analysis, Route2school pays attention to both the objective and subjective road safety. “Accident figures provide an objective picture about the road safety in a particular street, neighbourhood or municipality. Subjective road safety refers to the perception of people: their opinion about (a part of) the school route. Objective and subjective road safety do not necessarily run parallel. It is perfectly possible that a road is safe and technically alright, but that road users nevertheless feel unsafe. That is why we combine quantitative and qualitative data in our analysis. We ask the police to give us the accident figures and compare these numbers with the data we receive via the Route2school app. Are there similarities?”, explains project leader Keven Clijmans (IMOB, UHasselt). “For example; in a street with a lot of bus traffic, vulnerable road users can feel very intimidated by all these busses and still only a few accidents occur. It is our ambition to also improve the feeling of safety in these specific situations.”
Mobile app and web application
Pupils, parents, teachers and school management log the routes they travel daily from and to school, and indicate the bottlenecks they meet on their way. “They can report bottlenecks with the mobile app when they are on their way, and via the web application when they are at home.” The results are discussed with the municipality, police and schools. “The goal: find a solution for the reported bottlenecks”, so says Kevin Clijmans (IMOB, UHasselt) in the Gazet van Antwerpen.
Read the complete article on GvA online (Dutch). // Picture: RR – Gazet van Antwerpen