Florida Safe Routes to School, a program that funds efforts to increase the number and safety of students walking or biking to school, has opened the call for applications. Applications for projects in Pinellas County are due to the Florida Department of Transportation (District Seven) by December 30, 2016. The application is available on the FDOT website.
A signature of support from Forward Pinellas, acting in its role as the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), is required on each SRTS application to indicate that the MPO is aware of the project and supports the project concept as submitted in the application. In order to provide staff with sufficient time to review applications and provide the required signature, project sponsors should submit a courtesy copy of all SRTS applications (electronic copies are acceptable) to Robert Feigel at firstname.lastname@example.org, by December 1, 2016.
The program works to increase the number of students walking and bicycling where it is safe to do so – and to fix the conditions where it is not safe. The opportunity to bike and walk to school offers a solution to an array of concerns about traffic safety, traffic congestion, transportation costs and lack of physical activity. It also provides an opportunity for students to build independence.
Eligible recipients of funding for Safe Routes to School projects are limited to state, local and regional transportation-maintaining agencies, including schools and school districts. The 2015 call for applications resulted in more than $25 million allotted for Safe Routes to School initiatives.