The funding sources for Safe Routes to School have changed. Previously there was a centralized solicitation for planning and for implementation of infrastructure and non-infrastructure projects. There is now a variety of sources of funding as outlined below.
Federal Safe Routes to School Program - Remaining funds for the Federal SRTS program will be programmed in 2014. MnDOT will have a solicitation for planning grants soon for the 2015 fiscal year. MnDOT will work with Regional Development Commissions and Metropolitan Planning Organizations to develop these plans. For schools not in an RDC or MPO who working on SRTS plans can have plans developed by a MnDOT consultant. There will not be another solicitation for infrastructure grants using this funding sources.
Federal transportation alternatives funds - Safe Routes to School is now an eligible program under the Federal Transportation Alternatives Program. The TAP program requires a 20% local match for Safe Routes to School projects (the Federal Safe Routes to School Program required no local match). The TAP program is administered through the local Area Transportation Partnerships and the MetCouncil. TAP funds are best used for infrastructure projects.
Greater Minnesota - In October, MnDOT will announce details about the TAP solicitations for 2016-17 and program goals. The local ATPs will each conduct their own solicitations. Local ATPs will publish their own deadlines and specific criteria. Visit the TAP webpage for details.
Twin Cities Metro Area - The TAP solicitation for the seven-county Twin Cities metropolitan area (Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott, Washington counties) will be conducted by the Metropolitan Council and its Transportation Advisory Board. The Council anticipates releasing a TAP solicitation in late 2013. For more information about the Twin Cities TAP solicitation, please contact Heidi Schallberg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Minnesota Safe Routes to School Program - In 2013, the Minnesota legislature funded the MN SRTS program with $500K for the biennium to be used for non-infrastructure projects. The MnDOT SRTS Steering Committee is working to advise MnDOT on how to manage the funds and to develop statewide programs and resources to support SRTS.
Minnesota Department of Health, State Health Improvement Program - SRTS is an eligible activity under MDH-SHIP. County Health Boards who identified Active School Day and Active Living strategies in their programs can work with local public health to implement non-infrastructure SRTS programs. Visit the MDH website for details.
The Safe Routes to School grant awards have been announced for 2013. MnDOT had $4.3 million in federal grants for Safe Routes to School. It was a highly competitive grant process with 102 applications received, requesting nearly $15 million in funding.
Planning Assistance Grants
- Received 24 applications requesting over $350,000
- The median amount awarded by plan was $10,000 but varies by locations, size of the schools, and other variables
- Planning work will begin in August 2013 and wrap up in summer 2014
- Plans are completed by local Regional Development Commissions. Schools located in Non-RDC areas work with a MnDOT hired consultant.
Non-infrastructure Implementation Grants
- Received 15 applications requesting over $950,000 requested
- These grants will begin in August 2013 and continue for 2 years
- Many of these communities will be implementing action items from their 2012-2013 school SRTS plans
- Received 63 applications requesting more than $15 million
- The communities will begin work this spring on preliminary engineering
- Construction of the projects will be completed during the summer of 2014
More information about the grant applications and process can be found at the bottom of this page.
- Austin, Mower County - 6 schools
- Bigfork, Itasca County - 1 school
- Blackduck, Beltrami County - 1 school
- Carlton, Carlton County- 1 school
- Clarkfield, Yellow Medicine County - 1 school
- Cromwell, Carlton County - 1 school
- Crosby, Crow Wing County - 2 schools
- Frazee, Becker County - 2 schools
- Floodwood, St. Louis County - 1 school
- Glenwood, Pope County - 1 school
- Kelliher, Beltrami County - 1 school
- Lake Crystal, Blue Earth County - 1 school
- Lake Park, Becker County - 2 schools
- Le Sueur, Le Sueur County - 2 schools
- Montevideo, Chippewa County - 2 schools
- Montgomery, Le Sueur, and Lonsdale; Le Sueur & Rice counties - 4 schools
- Parkers Prairie, Otter Tail County - 2 schools
- Rice, Benton County - 1 school
- Rushford, Fillmore County - 1 school
- Sartell, Stearns & Benton counties - 2 schools
- St. Anthony Village, Hennepin County - 1 school
- Wrenshall, Carlton County - 1 school
- Better Living Exercise and Nutrition Daily (BLEND), Stearns & Benton counties, 5 schools ($96,000) - Hire a coordinator to implement education and enforcement activities, provide support for crossing guards and purchase supplies/materials for SRTS programs.
- Carlton County Public Health & Human Services, Carlton County, 8 schools ($25,300) - Increase student access to bicycles and bicycling education in Carlton County by purchasing a bicycle fleet and trailer, funding one year of maintenance and purchasing of helmets/ tools needed for bicycling maintenance.
- City of Red Wing, Goodhue County, 1 school ($27,700) - Fund a part-time SRTS coordinator to collaborate and implement “Out Your Front Door” walking and biking to school maps and posters; National Walk/Bike to School Day; Park & Walk-Walking Wednesdays; neighborhood “bus hubs;” bike safety training; Fix a Bike program; publicity; digital speed signs and crosswalk “stings;” and evaluation.
- Columbia Heights Public Schools, Anoka County, 4 schools ($12,000) - Provide access to bicycles and bicycle education through purchasing a bike fleet, bike maintenance training for staff and students and tools for bicycle repair.
- Mankato Area Public Schools, Blue Earth County, 6 schools ($52,000) - Hire a part-time SRTS coordinator to manage education and encouragement activities, develop walking maps and assist with additional SRTS activities.
- Minneapolis Public Schools, Hennepin County, 5+ schools ($96,000) - Hire a SRTS coordinator, purchase a district-wide bicycle fleet and provide education and encouragement activities.
- Rochester-Olmsted Planning Department, Olmsted County, 5+ schools ($83,000) - Develop education and encouragement materials, provide a coordinator and resource support for a middle school student bicycling cooperative and provide safety campaign marketing materials.
- South Washington County Schools, Washington County, 8 schools ($62,000) - Hire a SRTS coordinator to assist the school SRTS teams, purchase safety equipment and training for school safety patrols, purchase incentives for students and pay for SRTS safety campaign materials.
- Upper Minnesota Valley Regional Development Commission, Swift, Chippewa, Yellow Medicine, & Lac qui Parle counties, 7 schools ($71,000) - Hire a regional coordinator to provide support for education, encouragement and school patrol safety campaigns.
- Argyle, Marshall County ($300,000) –Engineering and construction of sidewalks and crossing improvements around the school
- Barnesville, Clay County ($300,000) –Improve conditions for walking and bicycling for Atkinson Elementary and Barnesville Middle/High School by adding accessible sidewalks and improving crossings
- Brainerd, Crow Wing County ($300,000) – Improve safety for children walking and bicycling to Garfield School by adding sidewalks and curb extensions
- Byron, Olmsted County ($296,370) – Fill-in sidewalk gaps and complete connection for Byron Elementary and Middle School
- Delano, Wright County ($292,110) – Connect existing paths on the elementary and middle school campus and separate pedestrian and bicyclist traffic from motor vehicle traffic
- Dilworth, Clay County ($300,000) – Construct a path that will connect students in northeast Dilworth to Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton School
- Grand Rapids, Itasca County ($157,968) – Construct sidewalk and fill in gaps for Murphy Elementary and R.J.E. Middle School
- Mankato, Blue Earth County ($200,647) – Construct sidewalks and curb extensions for the students of Kennedy Elementary and Franklin Elementary School
- Minneapolis, Hennepin County ($296,610) – Provide bike storage, improve median and crossings for Lucy Craft Laney School
- Pipestone, Pipestone County ($245,719) –Improve crossings and construct trail connections for Pipestone Elementary, Pipestone Middle/High School and residential neighborhoods
- Princeton, Mille Lacs County ($299,019) – Construct sidewalks and improve crossings for North Elementary and Middle School
- Sauk Rapids, Benton County ($300,000) – Construct sidewalks and improve crossings for Pleasantview Elementary
- Wadena, Wadena County ($297,418) – Build sidewalks and curb extensions, improve crossings and install traffic control devices for Wadena-Deer Creek Elementary and Wadena-Deer Creek Middle/High School
Information on past MnDOT grant recipients can be found here.
Kindergarten through eighth-grade schools in Minnesota may apply for grants in three categories:
- Infrastructure implementation grants – Schools, in partnership with cities or counties, will receive grants to support infrastructure that improves safety or access for children walking and bicycling to school.
- Non-infrastructure implementation grants – Schools will receive small grants to support education, encouragement, enforcement or evaluation activities related to safe walking and bicycling to school.
- Planning assistance – Schools will receive expert assistance to complete a Safe Routes to School plan, which will analyze existing conditions, gather public input and identify potential infrastructure and non-infrastructure solutions. SRTS plans are completed statewide by regional development commissions. Schools in Non-RDC areas work with a MnDOT hired consultant.
Questions about applying?