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Score a Safe Routes to School mini grant + Take the city’s neighborhood greenways survey

A huge bike train to Bryant Elementary on Bike-to-School Day 2013
A huge bike train to Bryant Elementary on Bike-to-School Day 2013

Got an idea for a project that could encourage more kids to bike or walk to your neighborhood school? Whether the school is private or public, the city wants to help make it happen with grants of up to $1,000.

Maybe you and some other parents want to start a walking school bus or bike train. This is a way to get some money to help promote it and help get required equipment or materials. Or maybe your school pick-up and drop-off process is dangerous or intimidating to kids that walk or bike. This could be a way to fund development of a better traffic circulation plan.

Or maybe you have a totally new and awesome idea for how to make walking and biking to school even more fun. Well, the window to apply for the Safe Routes to School mini grant program is open now through October 31. The application is crazy simple (four questions!), and you will need a letter of support from the school principal.

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As we reported recently, the city’s Safe Routes to School program is one of the city’s best recent successes and now reaches nearly every school. So be a part of the walk and bike to school revolution! Details from SDOT:

During October, “International Walk to School Month,” the Seattle Department of Transportation is accepting applications for Mini Grants of up to $1,000 to fund projects that educate students about pedestrian and bicycle safety and encourage walking and biking to school.

Some examples of past projects funded by the Safe Routes to School Mini Grants include kick-starting a walking school bus with safety vests and flags for bus “drivers;” supporting walk to school month events with prizes and incentives for walkers; incentives for bike to school commuters, like bike locks, lights, and helmets; bicycle safety and maintenance classes to make sure kids know the rules of the road and how to keep their bikes in tip-top shape; traffic circulation plans to make sure traffic flows as safely as possible around schools.

How to Apply for a Mini Grant

For more information and to apply for a Mini Grant, visit www.cityofseattle.net/transportation/ped_srts_grant.htm.  In addition to the application, a letter of support from the school principal must be emailed, mailed, or faxed by the application due date. For questions, contact Ashley Harris at [email protected]. Completed applications are due Oct. 31, 2014 by 5 p.m. and recipients will be announced by Dec. 5, 2014. Funds will be distributed in January 2015.

Neighborhood Greenways Survey

The city wants to know what you think of the neighborhood greenways they have built so far, and what could make them better. So take a couple minutes to take this short online survey to help them out.

One suggestion for improvement is for the routes to include more traffic diverters to prevent car through-traffic. These diverters are vital to making sure cars driving on the street are local traffic only, and to make sure that the improvements to the street don’t end up drawing more cars than before. This is especially important because so many of Seattle’s neighborhood streets do not have enough space for people biking and driving to pass each other comfortably. Skinny streets are good for slowing vehicle speeds, but bad if there are too many cars.

So take the survey by October 10. And if you have any ideas, you should also let us know in the comments below.

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