Street Story: A Platform for Community Engagement

Share stories about where you've been in a crash or near miss, or where you feel safe or unsafe traveling using our Street Story tool.

Street Story

Street Story is a community engagement tool that allows residents, community groups and agencies to collect information about transportation collisions, near-misses, general hazards and safe locations to travel. To promote access to the tool, SafeTREC conducts technical assistance with communities and organizations on using Street Story. Street Story is free to use and publicly accessible.

Street Story features a survey where people can record travel experiences. Once a record has been entered, the information is publicly accessible on the website with maps and tables that can be downloaded.

Community organizations and agencies can use this information as part of qualitative information gathering approaches for local needs assessments, transportation safety planning efforts, safety programs and project proposals. In order to help ensure access to the tool, we work directly with community organizations across California to incorporate the Street Story tool into their existing projects and programsWe provide in-person workshops, webinars, and one-on-one assistance. 

Street story in action photo collage

The program was created by a team of city planners, public health professionals, engineers, social welfare experts and computer scientists at UC Berkeley’s Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC). As it is a relatively new tool, we are continually evaluating how it is used and exploring what changes may need to be made to strengthen it.

Street Story can be used in any city or county in California. The online platform is available in English and Spanish. SafeTREC also offers a paper version of the tool, in English and Spanish, for in-person events. If you are interested in learning how your own community can use Street Story, please email us at streetstory@berkeley.edu

Visit Street Story: English: https://streetstory.berkeley.edu/. Spanish: https://streetstory.berkeley.edu/es/

Street Story at Work

Street Story is being used to complement transportation safety efforts in a number of communities across California. Various groups have used Street Story in a few different ways over the years:

  1. Street Story can be used as an online hazard report for a public work department or, where such a reporting system already exists, it can be used to supplement the hazard reporting. In Humboldt County, a local nonprofit has partnered with county agencies to use the tool as a reporting system. A nonprofit in Bakersfield has worked with local agencies to use Street Story as a supplement to the separate city and county reporting systems.

  2. Agencies can use Street Story as part of their community outreach to inform their planning. Caltrans District 4 used Street Story to collect community feedback as part of their pedestrian plan outreach.

  3. Community groups can use Street Story to provide qualitative support to community-led improvement efforts, particularly in areas where crash data does not fully show the community’s experience. The community of Muscoy, among many, have used Street Story as a tool to support their local efforts.

  4. UC Berkeley SafeTREC has also adapted the tool for use in and by Tribal communities in California. The Tribal Street Story tool will allow for the collection of community-generated data on road conditions and transportation safety issues in and near tribal lands. To learn more about how Street Story is being used, visit our SafeTREC in the News page.

Street Story Technical Assistance

We offer in-person and online trainings to assist organizations in finding ways to use the Street Story tool that fit specific community needs. If you are interested in learning more about Street Story and opportunities for collaboration, please email streetstory@berkeley.edu.

Screenshot of entry on Street Story that experienced a crash

Watch our tutorial on how to use Street Story: English / Spanish

Upcoming events and recordings of past Street Story webinars:

  • May 17, 2022 - "I have the data, now what?" A closer look at data collection, collaboration, and planning between community and governmental agencies." In this webinar, you'll learn how agencies and coalitions collaborate to collect and analyze data from Street Story, an online community engagement tool. The panelists will discuss collaborative efforts and how the data has been used to apply for grant funding and implement projects to make walking, biking and rolling safer in their communities. Watch the recording.
  • March 29th, 2021 - From Practice to Progress: Street Story in the Field. In this webinar, presenters from the Altadena Town Council, Bike Bakersfield, and WALKSacramento discussed how they use Street Story, a community engagement tool that allows residents to share where they’ve been in a crash or near miss, or where they feel safe or unsafe traveling. In this webinar, learn how local governments and community organizations have been using Street Story prior to and during the pandemic period to support their transportation safety advocacy, community engagement, and planning efforts. Watch the recording.
  • June 25th, 2020 - How to Conduct a Walk Audit. In this webinar hosted by WALKSacramento, you'll learn about tools needed to lead and conduct your own assessment of walking and biking conditions in your neighborhoods. The webinar will also highlight elements that should be considered when walking the streets: pedestrian facilities, bicycle facilities, transit facilities, vehicle facilities, and land used to consider when conducting an audit. Jarah Crowner from UC Berkeley SafeTREC also provides an overview of the Street Story community engagement tool. Watch the webinar.
  • February 25, 2020 - Street Story Workshop, Los Angeles, CA. Participants at this workshop, hosted by HCIDLA, the West Latino Resource Center and the California Office of Traffic Safety, will learn how to improve walking and biking safety in their community and how Street Story can be used to share transportation safety stories. Download the flyer for more details.
  • February 20, 2020 - Street Story 101, Altadena, CA. Had a crash, or near miss in Altadena? Feeling unsafe while traveling? Join UC Berkeley SafeTREC staff at an upcoming workshop, "Street Story 101" on Thursday, February 20th to learn about Street Story. SafeTREC staff will demonstrate how to use the tool, followed by an opportunity for you to share your stories. More details. Download the flyer.
  • August 7, 2019 - Street Story at Work: How Communities are Using the Tool. In this webinar, you'll hear from UC Berkeley SafeTREC, California Walks, Bike Bakersfield and Humboldt County's Coalition for Responsible Transportation Priorities how community organizations are learning about local transportation safety issues from their community members via Street Story. The presenters will also share ideas about how you can use Street Story in community engagement activities. Watch the webinar.
  • July 17, 2019 - Introducing Street Story: A Tool for Community Engagement. In this webinar, you will hear about how Street Story works, and learn about ideas on how you can use Street Story in community engagement activities. Watch the webinar.
  • February 5, 2019 - Active Transportation Resource Center (ATRC) Webinar. Watch the recording: Street Story: A Platform for Community Engagement

Street Story FAQ

What is Street Story?

Street Story is a community engagement tool where individuals can anonymously report collisions, near-misses and places they feel safe or unsafe. Organizations can use the tool as qualitative data for transportation safety advocacy, outreach, education, planning and evaluation.

Street Story is not a substitute for reporting collisions to the police.


Why Street Story?

Stories can provide rich and important qualitative information about transportation safety issues that we may not be able to learn about from traditional data sources.

Street Story allows individuals to record narratives, geographical and categorical information about their transportation experiences, and then stores this information in publicly accessible maps and tables. Entries can be easily recorded and shared with community partners.


How was Street Story created?

SafeTREC researchers recognized that community members have a wealth of information about transportation safety. Street Story is designed to help residents and community organizations record and understand this kind of information. Street Story was created with significant input from members of the public, community organizations, city and county agencies, and industry experts.


How will the information be used?

The information collected on Street Story is publicly accessible, and is designed to be used as qualitative input for transportation safety needs assessments, program development, grant writing, planning efforts, evaluations, etc. SafeTREC may use the data for transportation safety research.


Is Street Story available in multiple languages?

The online platform is available in English and Spanish. SafeTREC also offers a paper version of the tool, in English and Spanish, for in-person events.


How can I get involved?

For more information about how to use Street Story, check out our Street Story Starter Guide, or email streetstory@berkeley.edu.


What’s next?

The Street Story team is working directly with organizations to collect community input using the tool.  As we learn how Street Story is being used, we are making improvements to the program.

For the latest news and updates on Street Story, please sign up for the SafeTREC newsletter.

Research and Publications

The following publications and presentations describe research conducted by SafeTREC and partners on crowdsourced data:

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.