Fifteen projects intended to encourage children to walk or bicycle to school have been selected for funding through the Safe Routes to School program administered by the Kansas Department of Transportation.
A total of $1,335,000 will be allocated for projects including development of a Safe Routes to School plan and infrastructure construction.
The federal program, created in 2005, has several purposes:
Enable and encourage children, including those who are disabled, to walk or bicycle to school;
Make walking or biking to school safe and appealing;
Facilitate projects that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption and air pollution in the vicinity of schools;
The city of McPherson has been selected for Phase I funding, which covers the costs of developing a Safe Routes to School plan.
McPherson Mayor Tom Brown told Mid Kansas Online, "We've had several unsuccessful attempts, but we're very happy to get full funding for design of a Safe Route to School. Our submission was involving Roosevelt School."
Other cities in Kansas also approved for Phase I funding are: Cimarron, Dighton, Haven, Iola, Lawrence, Lewis, Neosho Rapids, and Olpe. All cities will receive up to $15,000.
Receiving Phase II funding for infrastructure improvements are Beloit, Ellsworth, Erie, Fort Scott, Hutchinson, and Kinsley. All cities will receive up to $200,000. Phase II projects can include sidewalk improvement or construction, pavement markings and signage.