Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communications Office
Governor Fletcher, Transportation Cabinet Launch Safe Routes to School Pilot Projects

Press Release Date:  Friday, June 30, 2006  
Contact Information:  Jodi Whitaker
502-564-2611
 


Safe Routes improvement projects total $1.6 million

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor Ernie Fletcher and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) today announced the first pilot projects for the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program.  The safe routes program is designed to make bicycling and walking to school a safer, more appealing and healthier alternative for students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

“Safe Routes to Schools will have a positive impact on local schools and communities,” said Governor Ernie Fletcher.  “I am committed to safety and to improving the educational climate and learning environment for our Kentucky school children. In addition to safety, these projects help motivate our children, getting them into a mindset for learning.”

A total of 13 pilot projects were announced today including funding of over $1.6 million.  A list of projects is attached.

The Safe Routes to School program is comprised of five elements referred to as the five E’s.  The selection process was driven by the following:

  • Engineering—creating operational and physical improvements to the infrastructure surrounding schools that reduce speeds and potential conflicts with motor vehicle traffic, and establishing safer and fully accessible crossings, walkways, trails and bikeways.
  • Education—teaching children about the broad range of transportation choices, instructing them in important lifelong bicycling and walking safety skills and launching driver safety campaigns in the vicinity of schools. 
  • Enforcement—partnering with local law enforcement agencies to ensure traffic laws are obeyed in the vicinity of schools (including enforcement of speeds, yielding to pedestrians in crossings, and proper walking and bicycling behaviors), and to initiate community enforcement such as crossing guard programs. 
  • Encouragement—events and activities to promote walking and bicycling (bike rodeos). 
  • Evaluation—monitoring and documenting outcomes and trends through the collection of data both before and after the intervention.

The safe routes program was established in August 2005 as part of the most recent federal transportation re-authorization legislation--SAFETEA-LU. For the first time, state transportation agencies will create and administer the safe routes programs which allow communities to compete for funding for local safe routes projects.

“These improvement projects benefit everyone because they underscore the importance of safety and healthy lifestyles and will reduce air pollution in and around our schools,” said Transportation Cabinet Secretary Bill Nighbert.

More information about the safe routes program in Kentucky is available online at http://www.saferoutes.ky.gov.


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6.30.06 safe routes project list.doc