Spa City looks for Complete Streets money

— Saratoga Springs has taken another step forward in its plans for “Complete Streets” by applying for a grant that would fund a study to determine the most effective and safe routes for bicycles, pedestrians and mass transit.

According to City Planner Kate Maynard, the application has a connection to the city’s Complete Streets policy, which was adopted last year and focuses on improving non-automobile connectivity in the city.

“It is a concrete next step in the Complete Streets policy,” Maynard said of the study.

The grant the city is seeking is through the Capital District Transportation Committee. In concert with Department of Transportation and other regional entities, the committee looks to assign federal and state transportation dollars on a project-by-project basis.

The committee’s Linkage Program is looking at offering funds for municipalities to consider advancing planning efforts that include land use and transportation. The grant money totals $60,000 and requires a 25 percent match from the city.

If approved, the grant money would be used to look at the existing conditions of the city’s transportation network and the people who use it, and determining the goals of a future plan and how to meet them.

Maynard said an example would be an intact bicycle network around the city.

“What streets are able to physically accommodate bicycles, changes that need to take place to make that happen, gaps in sidewalks, how we can bridge those,” are questions the study might address, she said.

One of the Complete Streets goals is an examination of the CDTA transit system in the city. Maynard says the study would determine how easy it is to reach different destinations through the transit system.

Maynard said that on Geyser Road the city was successful in getting a Safe Routes To School grant funded, but they noticed transit bus stops on Geyser are just along the side of the road.

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