ASU awarded $450,000 grant

ASU awarded $450,000 grant
pic of bicycles at Arkansas State University (Source: KAIT-TV)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Arkansas State University just received a grant that will help keep students both connected and safe.

ASU was awarded a $450,000 grant from the Arkansas Department of Transportation.

The money will be used to fund the second phase of a campus wide multi-use path.

Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Dr. Len Frey said they are grateful for the support they have received from ArDOT.

“We are thankful to have the support of ArDOT to complete this portion of our campus Master Transportation Plan,” Frey said. “It will allow us to complete work on the trail started under a similar ArDOT grant that we opened this past summer.”

The first phase provided a parallel multi-use path for pedestrians and bicycle riders along two of the higher traffic areas of campus, Aggie Road on the western side of campus and underneath the Marion Berry Parkway along University Loop West.

Phase two will extend the protected lane along the southern border of campus along University Loop and connect to the eastern half of campus, again along Aggie Road as it departs campus toward Red Wolf Boulevard.

Once finished, the path will allow students, faculty and staff flow across campus and serve as a connection route for future pathways to the city of Jonesboro.

University Planner Bill Hall said they’ll soon begin the final plans.

"We will begin detail design on this second portion of the trail after the first of the year," Hall said. "We will also set the construction schedule during that time period."

ASU was the only university campus awarded a TAP grant during the fall cycle.

"This new section will provide connectivity to Aggie Road and Olympic Drive on the east," Hall said. "Our recently completed project has provided the opportunity for connection to a future downtown trail." With the previous $500,000 TAP grant toward Phase One, A-State matched with $100,000 to bring the total project to a $600,000 investment in campus.

ASU is the first bicycle-friendly university in the state of Arkansas.

A-State was also recently upgraded to BFU Silver status by the League of American Bicyclists and is one of only 59 Silver-level honorees in the nation.

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