The city of Marietta and Marietta City Schools will apply for a grant worth up to $500,000 that will be used to build sidewalks and improve crosswalks in school zones. The city and school board should know if they received the money in March.
If received, the money would allow students to walk or ride their bikes to school instead of taking the bus, which will decrease traffic congestion and air pollution and improve bicycle and pedestrian safety in school zones.
Fewer than 15 percent of children walk to school, 25 percent ride the bus and more than 50 percent ride in family vehicles. Sidewalks would promote more students walking to school, improving their physical fitness while helping the environment in school zones.
The Safe Routes to School (SRTS) grant is 100 percent federally funded and does not require city funding.
About the Safe Routes to School program
Safe Routes to School is an international movement that began in the early 1970s in Denmark. In 2005, the United States government created a national SRTS program.
The SRTS program allows communities to make walking and bicycling to school a safe and routine activity for students. Through the program, funding is available, which would build safer streets by constructing sidewalks, bicycle facilities and crosswalks, and develop programs encouraging and educating children and parents on walking and bicycling safely to school.
An efficient transportation system is a goal in the city’s vision statement.
For more information, call Marietta’s Development Services Department at 770-794-5631.