November 8, 2012

City Pursuing $152,500 Safe Routes to Schools Sidewalk Grant

The City of Memphis is seeking federal funding for phase one of a proposed four-part plan to connect various public facilities in the city via sidewalk.

On November 5th, the city completed a grant application for the Missouri Department of Transportation's Safe Routes to School infrastructure program.

The Federal-aid Safe Routes to School Program (SRTS) as part of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act passed in 2005. The Federal SRTS Program provides Federal-aid highway funds to State Departments of Transportation for infrastructure and non-infrastructure projects, and to administer state SRTS programs that benefit elementary and middle school children in grades K-8.

The federal program targets increased bicycle, pedestrian, and traffic safety while encouraging more children walking and bicycling to and from schools to help decrease traffic congestion and improve childhood health and reduce childhood obesity while encouraging healthy and active lifestyles.

The proposal is seeking $152,500 in funding to help construct approximately one half mile of sidewalks on Lincoln Street, from the Scotland County R-I School District campus on Lovers Lane to Missouri Avenue. The proposed route would travel south from the school along Lincoln Street, merging along Cecil Street to continue south two more blocks to Missouri Avenue.

Street Superintendent Roy Monroe indicated the grant application would help fund phase one of a master plan to ultimately connect the school with the public library, the city business district, parks, the fitness center and the hospital.

The plan calls for construction of five-foot wide sidewalks that will meet all Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.

"The project meets the ADA and safety standards needed to provide a unique route for school-aged children going to and from school to keep them away from the motoring public," Monroe said.

MoDOT has $3,780,000 in federal funding for SRTS projects in 2012. The grant provides 100% of funding for approved projects.

In 2011, the City of Kahoka was awarded a $242,400 grant through the SRTS program to build new sidewalks within a two-block radius of Black Hawk Elementary and Clark County Middle schools.

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