Grants aim to make walk to school safer

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Gov. Bill Haslam wants to more kids to walk or ride their bike to school, calling it a more appealing, healthier alternative for kids from kindergarten through eighth grades. To help make their trips safer, he awarded more than $2 million in grants, spread across 15 communities, through the Safe Routes to School Program, TDOT announced on Thursday.

"Increased physical activity is key to improving the health of Tennessee families," Haslam said. "The Safe Routes to School Program helps communities across the state create safer walking and biking environments for students and funds activities that encourage healthy lifestyles."

TDOT officials said money will go toward improving sidewalks, crosswalks, and signs as well as safe walking and biking educational activities.

Since 2005, the grants have funded projects at 138 schools across the state. The grants were made possible using dollars from the federal government.

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