Gov. Pat Quinn this week announced that Galesburg is among the cities receiving some of the $21.7 million in Illinois Safe Routes to School grants.

The grants are for 229 projects across the state. The federally-funded program is designed to enable and encourage children to walk and bike to school safely. Galesburg was awarded a total of $250,000 for two projects.

A pair of speed feedback signs near Lombard Middle School like those at Cooke, King and Nielson schools was awarded $18,000 and should be installed sometime this year.

North Street will see 2,400 feet of sidewalk installed east of Farnham Street near Nielson School as a result of $232,000 being awarded. Sidewalk installation will not occur in 2012 but will be completed as soon as possible, according to city officials.

“The Community of Galesburg is appreciative of the Safe Routes to School grant awards as they will greatly enhance the safety of our children and help our residents toward being more diligent in the awareness of pedestrians and bicyclists,” Mayor Sal Garza said. “We thank Governor Quinn and the state of Illinois for this important consideration.”

In the past, Galesburg was awarded SRTS grants in the amount of $23,000 to improve 300 feet of existing sidewalk near Gale School in 2008 and in 2009, a $99,000 grant for 900 feet of sidewalk along West North Street near Steele School and $96,500 for five sets of flashing crosswalk signs and three sets of speed feedback signs.

Illinois Safe Routes to School is a program of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration, designed to enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school and encourage a healthy lifestyle from an early age. The program also facilitates projects and activities that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution in the vicinity of primary and middle schools.

For more on grants and grant writing, visit Grant Pros.


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