Springfield seeking additional funding for street safety even with state grant

Hampden County

In 2018, Springfield received a $365,000 state grant to make the streets safer for people who ride a bicycle and enjoy safely walking through their neighborhood.

Springfield Traffic Engineer Hector Velez told 22News the city will soon be asking the state for another street safety grant to help complete the work begun a year ago.

“I hope in the future we can connect Springfield from Indian Orchard or Chicopee to downtown so we can create a safe bike network,” said Velez.

All this time, the city has worked with a bicycle advocacy group called WalkBike Springfield. Betsy Johnson told 22News the goals of this grassroots organization.

“We’re looking at where the places that are uncomfortable or unsafe to walk in Springfield,” she explained. “Where they need some sidewalk improvements, crosswalk improvements and the same thing for bicycling.”

With the money the city will apply for in May, WalkBike Springfield hopes to see a more advanced network of bike trails where, for example, riders can feel comfortable riding from East Longmeadow to Chicopee through Springfield.

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