Getting to School
Construction along the Charleston-Arastradero corridor is expected to be ongoing throughout 2021. Sign up for automatic email updates at the City's construction page.
Getting to Gunn
The majority of Gunn students walk or bike to school. For everyone's safety and health, students are encouraged to bicycle, walk, carpool or ride the bus to Gunn as often as possible. City of Palo Alto & PAUSD on Safe Routes to School.
VTA bus service to Gunn is expected to resume in August 2021.
If you encounter problems on your school commute (like traffic violations, hazards, absent crossing guards, overgrown bushes blocking paths or visibility, or unsafe or broken infrastructure), please report them using PaloAlto311 on your smartphone or computer. Proper reporting and tracking of problems enables our city and school district to make our community safer.
Walk & Roll
The Gunn Walk & Roll map shows suggested routes to school by foot or by bike from all directions. This map highlights information not on driving maps, including:
- Locations of bike lanes
- Lower traffic volume streets, off-road trails and paths
- Bike parking, crossing guards
- Signalized intersections
- Other facilities to help you identify the best walking or bicycling route for you.
When possible, students walking and riding bicycles are encouraged to use neighborhood routes and off-road paths to avoid car congestion at the main Arastradero driveway entrance. There are many walking/biking entrances and bicycle parking facilities around the campus:
- Gunn HS Path with bicycle parking in the back of the N building
- Miranda driveway and Bol Park Path access to bicycle racks between buildings J and H and behind the N building
- Paradise Way and Los Robles access to the path behind the athletic fields and path leading to multiple bike parking locations
- Main Arastradero entrance with access to bicycle parking next to Acorn Lounge and Buildings J and H.
- Georgia Ave access near the tennis courts
For a larger, area-wide bicycle map, see this page.
On-Campus Bicycle Repair & Pump Station
Ian Cramer (Gunn class of 2015) installed a do-it-yourself bicycle repair and pump station at Gunn for his Eagle Scout project. Bicyclists can find the Bike Fix station near the Village. In 2021, the PTSA donated a second station located in the bike parking area by Spangenberg Theater. The stations includes the most commonly used bike repair tools, including a tire pump. If you don't know what those tools are, no worries. The stations also includes a QR code you can scan with your smart phone to get videos and pictures with instructions on how to make minor repairs to your bicycle.
And There Are Prizes! When you bike to Gunn, please look for Pedal for Prizes volunteers offering treats and prizes from time to time at the bike cages.
VTA County Buses
VTA busses will resume serving Gunn students in August with Routes 288, 288L and 288M when school starts in August. The proposed schedule will be: Line 288M will depart Veteran’s Hospital 8 minutes after dismissal time, Line 288L will depart Veteran’s Hospital 10 minutes after dismissal time, Line 288 will depart Veteran’s Hospital 12 minutes after dismissal time. When students are dismissed at 3:30pm and 3:50pm a late line 288 trip will depart Veteran’s Hospital at 4:22pm.
- The VTA route 288 bus stop is directly in front of Gunn on Arastradero Road.
- Reduced-price VTA monthly bus passes are available in the Gunn Student Activity Center (650-354-8288) and can be used for all VTA buses.
- The VTA route 288 stop is directly in front of Gunn on Arastradero Road. See 288bus.org for the bus schedule and route maps. Generally, the VTA 288, 288L, and 288M bus schedules correspond to the Gunn bell schedule.
- Sign up for bus schedule updates. The "School Tripper" buses right before and right after school will remain in service.
- The VTA can be reached at 800-894-9908 or check the VTA site.
- VTA one-trip fares are $1.25 (no change given) for students under 18, and $2.50 for students over 18 for the VTA 88 bus. They are higher for other VTA buses.
- Students can sign up for a Youth Clipper Card. The card itself is free, and can be loaded with money that can be used to pay for trips on VTA buses (including the VTA 288 bus to Gunn), Caltrain, and other transit in the San Francisco Bay Area. More info here.
- Clipper Card application form
- The Gunn Student Activity Center also has hard copy maps and schedules available.
PAUSD offers seats on its Routes J and Z buses to Los Altos Hills, Palo Alto Hills and Stanford high school students for a fee. Bus passes are sold on a first-come, first served basis. Please call 329-3982 for route information.
To help reduce school commute auto congestion and emissions, please choose alternatives like bicycling, walking or riding the bus as often as possible. When you must drive, Gunn encourages you to:
- Share the ride. Carpooling helps to reduce congestion. New student drivers can carpool siblings if they have a note from their parents with them.
- Plan time for your school commute so you won’t feel rushed.
- Share the road safely by being alert and allowing space for people walking or biking around you.
- Drive attentively.
- If you are dropping off only one student through the main driveway entrance, you must use the drop-off area back by the gym.
- If you are driving two or more students to Gunn, you may drop off at the curb by the front office, which is reserved for buses and carpools.
- Drop-off areas are for active loading and unloading only. Please do NOT double park or park alongside any of the red curbs when picking up students.
- If your student is not ready to go, then please park in the lot. Please turn left just past the visitor parking to head toward the parking lot. Standing and waiting in the loading area is not permitted. Help minimize congestion and promote safety for everyone. Please turn off your engine while you wait.
There is no student, parent, or visitor parking at the Miranda driveway location. Also, no parking or standing is permitted in the Miranda drop-off zone. If your student is not immediately ready to be picked up, please park in the main Arastradero lot to wait. For everyone's safety and to reduce driver delays, please adhere to these rules:
- Drop off passengers only from the lane closest to the sidewalk.
- Passengers must exit from the right (sidewalk side) of vehicles.
- When exiting this driveway, all drivers must turn right on Miranda Avenue. Left turns are not permitted from the driveway exit, and they will be subject to ticketing.
- U-turns are illegal on Miranda Avenue and are subject to ticketing.
- No student drop-offs on Miranda.
Respect the marked crosswalks where pedestrians and bikes will access campus. Please watch for them.
Georgia Avenue Use
It is legal to drop off students near the pedestrian cut-through on Georgia Avenue by the tennis courts. Please respect the neighbors and the heavy bicycle and foot traffic in the area. If you must drive near the Georgia Avenue cut-through:
- Watch for bicyclists coming out of the path on their way to Fletcher Middle School. The path empties somewhat abruptly onto the street, disgorging relatively inexperienced bicyclists.
- Drive away from the path before making a U-turn, observing the law that no vehicle (and this includes bicycles) may be approaching closer than 200 feet. Better yet, avoid U-turning by looping through the streets at a safe speed.
Visitor Parking & Permits
Parents and other visitors who park at the school during the day must stop in the front office to get a temporary parking permit for parking in visitor parking spaces. Without this permit, you may be ticketed.
Student Parking & Permits
Students using the Gunn parking lot during the regular school day must buy a parking permit. Carpools with a carpool parking sticker receive preferred parking. Parking at Gunn High School is enforced randomly by the Palo Alto Police Department. Anyone parking in the wrong lot or without a visible permit will be issued an expensive ticket.
Purchase parking permits in the Student Activities Center. Permits are available for purchase by 12th graders. Carpoolers have priority during the first week of school, followed by single drivers who live on the other side of El Camino. After that, remaining permits will be sold. Upon payment and completion of parking registration, a student will receive a parking sticker which must be hung from the mirror of their car with the number facing out.
There are two types of permits:
- Carpool permits require a total of two occupants inside the vehicle and proof of possession of a driver's license for at least one year. Carpoolers may park in the the carpool lot, which is designated by blue signs.
- Regular permits allow students to park in the regular lot. Either permit costs $125.
If you forget to bring your permit to school, ask at the Main Office for a temporary day permit (limited to twice per school year).