City Awarded $331,000 Grant To Benefit Student Pedestrians
Safe Routes to School Infrastructure Program funds will be used to create sidewalks, improve crosswalk.
The grant funds will be utilized for engineering and construction expenses for the following projects:
- Paving of an existing gravel path from Lillian Road to Mohican Road
- Installation of sidewalk along Fishcreek Road south of Call Road
- Crosswalk improvements on Stow Road
Engineering is expected to begin in 2012/2013, with construction tentatively planned for 2013/2014.
The program’s primary goal is to provide safe routes for children to walk or bicycle to school. Potential benefits of the program include increasing physical activity in children, decreasing vehicle congestion around schools and decreasing fuel consumption/pollution.
While the primary beneficiary of the grant funds will be the students who will have safer routes for walking or bicycling to school, the addition of sidewalks and enhanced crosswalks along existing streets will benefit all Stow residents.
This award is the outcome of a lengthy process which began in 2008. In order to be eligible to apply for these funds, the city was required to prepare a School Travel Plan which involved public input, parent surveys and the coordination of city and school district officials.
Stow's Safe Routes to School Committee includes Mayor Sara Drew; Dr. Russ Jones, superintendent of Stow-Munroe Falls City School District; Robert Kurtz, city planning director, and Sandy Ray, fire prevention educator for the Stow Fire Department.
ODOT provided engineering consultants to make recommendations on potential improvements that would increase safety and remove potential impediments in area students’ walking/bicycling routes.
This is the second infrastructure grant awarded to Stow through this program. Stow received $284,290 in 2011 for the following projects:
- Installation of new sidewalks on Call and Fishcreek roads
- Installation of new sidewalks and crosswalk improvements on Northview, Rose and Hanna roads
- Paving of a dirt path south of the Indian Trail Elementary campus
- Installation of "speed feedback monitors” at Fishcreek Elementary, Highland Elementary/Lakeview Intermediate and Echo Hills Elementary
Engineering for these projects is nearly complete and construction is expected to begin this fall.
Unlike most state and federal grant programs, a significant benefit of the Safe Routes to School Program is that no matching funds are required.