Town gets $250,000 grant for sidewalks and pathways
The Rhode Island Division of Planning has slated $250,000 for infrastructure development that will create more formalized travel routes in the school neighborhood, the state office announced today. The grant is part of the national Safe Routes to School program that aims to encourage and enable more children to safely walk and bike to school.
The town, the Jamestown School District, the bicycle advocacy group Rolling Agenda and a coalition of community partners are working together to establish the Jamestown Safe Routes to Schools program. "It's a collaborative effort," Town Planner Lisa Bryer noted.
Timing of the grant award was perfect, Bryer said. The funding follows the lead of another $1.2 million grant awarded in the last two years from the state department of transportation (DOT). The slated funds will pay for improvements on Narragansett Avenue from East Ferry up to Maple Avenue. "It's notable that sidewalks all over town need fixing," Bryer adds.
In a memorandum to the state planning office, Bryer noted that the town was actively coordinating improvement efforts with the Narragansett Tribe in connection with the known Native American burial ground on the school ground site. "Due to this sensitive feature we may find it necessary, based on preliminary archeology studies, to find alternate, less invasive treatments for sidewalks," Bryer wrote.
Also in the memo, the town planner noted that approximately 150 students will benefit from this funding, which represents 33 percent of the total Jamestown School District population.