Are you ready for increased funding dedicated to Safe Routes to School in Oregon?
It is coming in 2019! Below are two great upcoming opportunities for making your community safer for students and others who walk and roll (or want to). Stay tuned for more information coming soon about how to get your school, district, city, or county ready to apply for these SRTS program funds.
Greater Portland RTO/SRTS Program Grants
In the greater Portland region, beginning with the 2019 grant cycle, Metro’s Regional Travel Options (RTO) program will provide $500,000 per year for Safe Routes to School programs. This funding will support several different types of grants and work, including:
- Program Development and Regional Technical Assistance: includes translation, creation of materials, a regional website, and support for evaluation, data, GIS, events, and outreach.
- Local Pass-Through Funding (SRTS program funding): Grant funding to support community-based activities that connect youth to education and encouragement opportunities related to school travel. This funding supports those communities already committed to investing in SRTS programs and/or infrastructure projects at schools, based on equity need, past performance, and demonstrated capability.
- Innovation Funding (SRTS establishment and innovation): Grant funding to support small-scale, innovative, or early-stage concepts. Categories include technology, new partners, pilot ideas, and those project ideas with a high potential equity impact. This funding may be requested by partners or Metro staff and will offer a smaller funding amount with additional technical assistance and support. In this category, it is likely projects will not initially obtain similar VMT reductions, as other fully funded programs, but they provide the opportunity to test ideas, bring on new partners not already working on SRTS and to generate potential greater future ROI.
- School Site Improvement Funding (SRTS enhancement funding): Grant funding to support current or past grantees by providing funding for items that assist youth traveling by transit, foot, or bicycle to and from school, such as bicycle parking, wayfinding signage, and street markings at or near schools.
The first call for applications for the Metro RTO/SRTS funding stream will take place in early 2019, with recipients selected by summer 2019. These grants are typically for 3 years (though this may vary with the new regional SRTS program), and there is a 10.27% match requirement (cash or in-kind services).
More information about past Metro's RTO grants can be found here.
ODOT SRTS Program (Non-Infrastructure) Grants
You may recall that the Oregon Transportation Commission doubled the budget for this program, to $1 million per year, which is great news for communities across Oregon who want to get youth walking and rolling more. We are especially excited to see how these programmatic funds will help support the infrastructure projects as they come on-line in the next few years.
The ODOT SRTS Advisory Committee will determine amount, duration, and focus of these grants in early 2019, and the call for proposals will open in April-May and likely be due in early July. ODOT will hold two non-infrastructure funding workshops and a webinar in March -- dates and location are TBD. These grants typically run from 1-3 years, require a pre-existing SRTS Action Plan for eligibility, and have a 12% match requirement (cash or in-kind services).
More information about ODOT's grants will be found here in 2019.