A project in Clifton Park and one in Saratoga Springs will get a portion of $112.2 million in funding that has been awarded to 81 projects that support bicycle and pedestrian enhancements and improve air quality across New York state.
Funding supports projects that include multi-use bicycle and pedestrian facilities, new accessible sidewalks that adhere to regulations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), improved access to public transportation, and enhanced roadway safety.
Of the $13.1 million earmarked for the Capital Region, $848,840 will go to the town of Clifton Park to construct an ADA-compliant, multi-use path.
Some $1.5 million will go to Saratoga Springs to complete the Greenbelt Trail Downtown Connector.
“This funding is critical to enhancing our infrastructure and paving the way for both pedestrian and bicycle travel,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. “By improving roadway safety and increasing access to healthy transportation alternatives, we are providing both residents and visitors a chance to experience the state’s natural beauty like never before, while supporting a cleaner, greener New York for generations to come.”
The funding, which will provide up to 80 percent of the cost of each project, is made available through the Federal Highway Administration and administered by the state Department of Transportation. Selected through a competitive solicitation process, awardees presented plans that will increase options for non-vehicular transportation, reduce vehicle emissions or traffic congestion, or both.
Including additional public and private funding, these projects will leverage nearly $233 million in construction and operational enhancements that will improve air quality, promote walking and biking, expand public transportation access, and boost tourism across the state, officials said.
“Improving our state’s biking and walking trails has numerous economic and public health benefits,” said U.S. Rep. Paul Tonko. “These investments promise to open up new transportation options for commuters, residents and tourists alike while promoting physical activity, protecting our air by reducing carbon pollution, and supporting vital economic activity.”
U.S. Sen. Charles E. Schumer said the federal investment “will help New York state make important upgrades for pedestrians and bicyclists and, in turn, encourage New Yorkers to travel more by bike or by foot. Increased biking and walking is good for our collective hearts and lungs; it also reduces congestion and helps boost the economy.
“These transportation improvements demonstrate the types of important local projects that can only be accomplished with direct public investment.”
State Department of Transportation Commissioner Matthew Driscoll said promoting local transportation alternatives, tourism and recreation opportunities “will enhance regional economic development opportunities and are indicative of the historic commitment New York State is making in transportation infrastructure.”