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Feb. 18, 2021

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MnDOT awards nearly $350,000 in Safe Routes to School grants

Funding will improve walking and bicycling programs with schools, communities

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Nineteen schools and communities in Minnesota will benefit from nearly $350,000 in planning assistance and “Boost” grants to help support or start Safe Routes to School programs, the Minnesota Department of Transportation announced today.

SRTS is an international program to improve safety, reduce traffic congestion around schools, increase physical activity and improve health by making it easier for students to walk and bicycle to school and in daily life.

“During the pandemic, when many students and families are learning from home and confined to their screens indoors, we know Minnesotans need safe places to get out and walk or bicycle more than ever before,” said Dave Cowan, SRTS coordinator. “These grants help give schools and communities more options to expand Safe Routes to School activities.”

Planning assistance grants provide communities with the resources to convene a team, understand key issues, prioritize strategies, and identify solutions that fit the local need. 

“Boost” grants support existing SRTS work, like providing bicycles to schools to improve physical education curriculum or addressing a community-specific need to help more students walk and bicycle to school safely.

New this year are the demonstration project technical assistance awards which allow schools and local roadway authorities to test engineering designs before installing more permanent designs which can help garner community support.

MnDOT announced the availability of this funding in October 2020. Grants in this solicitation are funded with state and federal Safe Routes to School dollars. Historically, nearly 70 percent of these funds have supported work within greater Minnesota communities.

Since 2005, MnDOT awarded more than $50 million in federal and state funds to communities to support Safe Routes to School. The majority of funding was awarded for infrastructure projects. The remainder was allocated for programs and planning that promote walkable and bikeable communities. See below for a list of grant winners.

More information about SRTS is available at mndot.gov/saferoutes or the SRTS Facebook page.

Safe Routes to School 2021 Boost Implementation Grants:

  • Minneapolis Public Schools
  • City of Tyler
  • Red Lake School District
  • Richfield Public Schools
  • Seward Montessori School
  • South Saint Paul Public Schools
  • West Central Initiative

Safe Routes to School 2021 Planning Assistance Grants:

  • City of Shorewood
  • Adrian Public Schools
  • City of Littlefork
  • City of Paynesville
  • City of Verndale
  • Hancock Public School
  • Rochester Public Schools
  • Oshki Ogimaag Charter School/Cook County SRTS
  • City of Chisholm
  • Underwood Public School

Safe Routes to School 2021 Demonstration Project Technical Assistance Awards:

  • Saint Paul Public Schools
  • City of Warren
  • Ashby Public Schools
  • City of La Crescent
  • City of Burnsville
  • Lake City