AWR Back Path provides access to Allen W. Roberts Elementary School from Commerce Drive, alleviating traffic at school drop off and pick up times. In 2016 our Safe Routes to School group conducted parent surveys at both elementary schools.
AWR Back Path crosses a creek through a wetland and floods during heavy rains. In spring and fall black ice also poses a danger. Heavy brush and poison ivy encroach on narrow path. Narrow width makes it difficult for bikes to pass double strollers. The AWR Back Path aged and the disrepair became a big issue on Facebook and PTA meetings. Heavy rains on frozen ground resulted in spring flooding to children’s knees. The Borough judged this project too urgent to be included in the next Safe Routes to School grant since that might take years. After Borough had committed to project it was still mentioned 5 times in AWR parent survey. Heavily mentioned on Facebook Group. Goals set Spring of 2016
We addressed flooding by adding drainage. DPW also raised and widened the path to double stroller width, making it safer for bicycle traffic as well. They also installed solar powered lighting triggered by a motion sensor.
Goals Achieved August of 2016
Goals achieved when the borough’s Department of Public Works improved drainage, widened and repaved the path.
$3,500 of tree trimming and poison ivy removal donated. Chose not to remove 2 trees and paved around them.
Possible future improvements to the AWR back path
- Painted lines in center to designate bike/pedestrian lanes
- Continue to update bridge as needed. (New codes make replacement a very major project.)
- Scout nature trail added to STEMshoots – identify plants along the path such as poison ivy, trillium, Jack-in-the-Pulpit, May Apples, Dog Tooth Violets, Spring Beauties, Wood Frogs in vernal pond, and Iron Wood trees.
Where can I learn more about New Providence Safe Routes to School? Check out our School Travel Plan
- Plan your route to New Providence Schools with our Interactive Maps
- Our other articles about Safe Routes to School in New Providence