Image: Don Erhardt —

Walk n' Roll to School

Image: Andy Feng —

Get Walking and Rolling!

UTown@UBC is made for walking (and biking!), with lots of pedestrian corridors, well-drained pathways, cycling routes, and green space!

For many years, UTown@UBC and the UNA jointly supported a twice-annual Walk 'n Roll Celebration Week. During this time, community members were encouraged to lace up their running shoes, jump on their bikes, skateboards and scooters, and walk and roll to school.  Our first Walk 'n Roll to School Celebration Week took place in May 2013, and each morning, community volunteers, decked out in bright yellow hats and t-shirts led a "walking school bus," from each campus neighbourhood to University Hill Elementary School, to help kids and parents become more comfortable walking and riding to school. When Norma Rose Point opened shortly after, parents and teachers quickly joined in the fun and took part as well. 

Although COVID led to a pause in the Walk 'n Roll to School program, due to parent support, we are now exploring opportunities to work with community members and champion year-round walking school buses on the UBC campus. 

Interested in starting your own walking school bus in your neighbourhood? Contact for more information on how! 

Why promote walking and cycling to schools?

Walking and biking to school are simple steps that families can take to reduce the number of cars traveling to and from school, be more active, and contribute towards a healthier community. By walking or biking to school, children develop friendships, learn and practice traffic safety skills, and enjoy active transportation daily.

Some of the many benefits of walking and biking to school include:

  • Fewer vehicles in the school zone: Reduced traffic at the school site results in less congestion, and safer access to the school for students who are walking and cycling.
  • Lower fuel costs: Local and neighbourhood trips previously taken by vehicle are replaced by walking and cycling.
  • Reduced emissions and improved air quality: Fewer cars being used for neighborhood and local journeys means reduced emissions in your community.
  • Pedestrian and cycling safety education: Walking and cycling with adults or older students not only ensures a safe trip to school, it's also a great chance for children to model and learn safe walking and riding skills.
  • Healthier communities: Active children are more likely to be active adults, and with child obesity on the rise, encouraging children to exercise as part of a day to day journey provides motivation to lead a healthy lifestyle. Children will also experience the health benefits which result from improved air quality and safer streets.
  • Trips to and from school that are fun!: Children love walking and wheeling with their friends. It gives them a chance to visit and chat, and to observe nature and get to know their community. It gives them a chance to release some energy before class and wind down afterwards.
  • Stronger communities: More children walking through the neighborhood brings a greater sense of community and awareness about health and safety.


Walk'n Roll to School Educational Materials

As part of the Walk'n Roll to School program, UTown@UBC and the UNA have developed brochures with tips to help parents and children discuss safely commuting.