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Frazee awarded Safe Routes to School grant

The Minnesota Department of Transportation announced the recipients of $4.8 million in federal grants for Safe Routes to School. The grants will support Safe Routes to School at 138 schools in 50 communities.

“These projects will help communities increase opportunities for children to walk and bike to school,” said MnDOT Commissioner Charlie Zelle. “More students walking and biking means less traffic on the road and in front of schools, improving safety and promoting healthier kids.”

Schools received grants in two categories:

  • Planning – Funding to complete a Safe Routes to School plan to help analyze existing conditions, gather public input and identify potential infrastructure and non-infrastructure solutions at K-8 schools. Plans will be completed by the Regional Development Commission or a planning consultant hired by MnDOT.
  • Infrastructure – Funding for improving the environment and infrastructure around the schools such as crosswalks and trails.

MnDOT announced the available grants in December 2013. It received 85 applications and funded 60 applications. The total amount requested was $11.3 million.

All Safe Routes to School grants in this solicitation are federal funds. The infrastructure grant includes a 20 percent local match. Each infrastructure grant includes a resolution of support from the local governing body to ensure community support. No local match is required for planning assistance grants.

Since 2005, MnDOT awarded nearly $15.5 million in federal funds to communities to support Safe Routes to School. The majority of funding—$13.1 million—was awarded for infrastructure projects. The remainder was allocated for non-infrastructure items and activities.

More information is available at www.mndot.gov/saferoutes.

A couple area school received grants. Among them are the Safe Routes to School 2014-2016 grant to West Central Initiative that included five schools: Ashby, Glyndon, New York Mills, Waubun-Ogema-White Earth, and Rothsay.

Those included in the 2015-2016 Infrastructure is Frazee for a multi-use trail connection to Frazee Elementary and Frazee-Vergas High School.

Also to Perham for sidewalk along 9th Street, off-road path to the elementary school, crossing improvements along 2nd Avenue SW, and separate bus one way exit for HOL Elementary and Prairie Wind Middle School.

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