SHERIDAN, Ark. — A new grant is expected to make commutes much safer for pedestrians in Sheridan.
You'll find crosswalks in the Grant County town, yet no sidewalks on some streets with the heaviest foot traffic.
“I get out in this areas Monday through Friday just to exercise,” said Brian Patrick. “I own a FitBit. I get steps in, keep myself healthy for my kids and family. I walk against traffic to see what's coming and I try to get over as much as possible.”
Lauren Goins, communication director for Kick Start Sheridan said the city just received a Transportation Alternatives Program grant through ARDOT to build a much needed sidewalk.
"We want to see a community more safer,” said Goins. "This sidewalk is just phase one of a more comprehensive project. It'll connect Sheridan Middle School to Sheridan High School, along High Street."
The TAP grant is $160,000. The grant pays for 80% of the cost, while the Sheridan School District pays 20%.
“That’s excellent news,” said Patrick. “It's better than walking in the street."
Many walkers and bikers along High Street are students. They've spent years walking to and from school on the road or in the ditch.
The city said it's time to change because you can't put a price tag on a child's safety.
"Kick Start Sheridan is city officials, the school district, patrons working together to provide a better environment for our community," Goins added.
The city is in the design and engineering phase of the project. It’s expected to start moving dirt in spring of 2020.