PALO ALTO (KCBS) _ There is a big push to get more students in the Bay Area walking and biking to school, instead of riding in buses and cars.

At Jordan Middle School in Palo Alto, about half of the student body bikes to class every day.

“We did a census a couple of weeks ago and the number was around 550 or 560. So, we were really impressed,” said principal Michael Milliken.

KCBS Matt Bigler Reports:

Milliken said the bikes help reduce traffic congestion in mornings, as well as their carbon footprint. But there are some challenges that go along with the popularity of pedal power.

“We’ve recently enlarged our bike racks. We’re rearranging them,” he said. “We’re having to find space for all of these bikes that students bring to school.”

Transit officials said they would like more students to ride bikes to schools and they’re offering grants to make it happen.

”We’re talking about $4 million,” said Valley Transportation Authority spokeswoman Jennie Loft.

She said cities can also submit proposals on how they plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions around schools.

“We want to encourage parents and teachers to think about providing alternative transportation options for our kids,” said Loft.

The grant proposals will go to the VTA Board in December.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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