Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety 

Drivers in Polk County hit and kill pedestrians and bicyclists more frequently than drivers in larger and more densely populated counties in Florida. The Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Team’s goal is to decrease the number of pedestrian and bicyclists injured and kills in crashes. Recognizing changing the culture takes time and commitment, the 35-member Team is comprised of individuals from a wide variety of local governmental agencies, hospitals, K-12 and higher education and private businesses.  The Team has devised a multi- pronged approach to making Polk County a safer place for pedestrians and bicyclists based on Education, Enforcement and Engineering.  In 2019 the Team’s tactical plan was finalized and includes:  1) safety messaging, 2) engineering (including conducting road audits), 3) public outreach, and 4) in-school education.  

The work of the Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Team has resulted in a new collaboration between the Polk County TPO and Polk County Public Schools to increase educational efforts on the issue of pedestrian and bicycle safety. In addition, the Team has aligned efforts with the Infrastructure Team to prioritize sidewalk coverage around Polk County Public Schools. This year a partnership with the School Health Team resulted in a 50% increase in the number of schools participating in the Walk to School events that took place in October of 2018. Goals for the upcoming year include the launching of a Be Seen Be Safe educational effort, to implement additional Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety educational training in Polk County Public Schools and to work with our law enforcement to engage in the High Visibility Enforcement campaign.


Mary Crowe, Ph.D. - Co-Chair, Florida Southern College

Tom Deardroff - Co-Chair, Polk County BoCC

Becky Alfonso - Florida Bicycle Association

Chuck Barmby - City of Lakeland

Ronnie Blackshear - Polk TPO

Art Bodenheimer - Lake Alfred Police Department

John Bohde - Polk County BoCC

Millie Brown - Florida DOT

Deborah Chesna - Florida DOT

Jennifer Cipriano - Lakeland Regional Health

Julia Davis - Polk TPO

Diana Degroot - Lakeland Regional Health

Bryan Dorman - Bartow Police Department

Michael O. Flora - Community Volunteer

Taylor Freeman - Florida Department of Health in Polk

Luke Hauser - City of Bartow

Lauren Hinton - Florida Department of Health in Polk County

Patricia Jackson - City of Polk City

Curtis Knowles - Polk TPO

Ryan Kordek - Polk TPO

Pam Luce - Polk County Public Schools

Xiomara Meeks - Polk TPO

Edward Mingus - Lakeland Police Department

Theo Petritsch - Landis Evans & Partners

Tricia Pichette - Polk County BoCC

Kristina Quenneville - Florida Highway Patrol

Angelo Rao - City of Lakeland

Jerry Rodriguez - Polk County Public Schools

Bill Skelton - Polk County BoCC

Julie Townsend - Lakeland Downtown Development Authority

Ed Trail - City of Haines City

Todd Vargo - City of Lakeland

Nelson Vega - City of Haines City

David Wheeler - Florida DOT

Kathleen Wright - Polk County Public Schools