Program encourages students to walk, bike

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Fifteen municipalities in Tennessee are receiving funds to encourage elementary and middle school students to walk and bike.

Gov. Bill Haslam announced the $2.1 million in Safe Routes to School grants this week.

The Safe Routes to School program is a statewide initiative designed to make bicycling and walking to school a more appealing and healthier alternative for students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

The funds will be used to make improvements to sidewalks, crosswalks and signs, as well as safe walking and biking educational activities.

The grants are made possible through a federally funded program administered by the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

Since 2005, the Safe Routes to School grants have funded improvement projects at 138 schools across Tennessee.