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Healthy Savannah and YMCA Help Improve Neighborhood Infrastructure and Pedestrian Safety Issues
The "Activity-Friendly Routes to Everyday Destinations Neighborhood Plan" is administered by the YMCA of Coastal Georgia (https://ymcaofcoastalga.org/)
Recently, volunteers from Largo Woods, Quail Forest and Wilshire Estates helped identify and tag areas of streetscape concern in those neighborhoods. That plan is still in development.
Turner says the Edgemere/Sackville plan, completed last fall, highlights the importance of improvements to Delesseps Avenue as well as the next phase of Cedar Street upgrades south of Delesseps. He says both of those projects have construction pending or currently underway and the neighborhood audit process has likely helped bring attention to the need for such construction.
He is encouraging other organizations representing priority neighborhoods to take advantage of this particular opportunity to identify potential barriers to safe, active transportation and physical activity which can lead to more equitable access to walking and biking routes within their community and throughout the City, including the Tide To Town urban trail system, currently underway.
Turner and his team members are also in the process of scheduling a meeting with the City of Savannah (https://www.savannahga.gov/
Grabowski also pointed to the City's overall commitment to reducing the increasing number of bike and pedestrian crashes, injuries, and fatalities in the Savannah area by its passage of the Vision Zero (http://bikewalksavannah.org/
The Vision Zero Resolution invites partnerships with communities, institutional partners, businesses, non-profits, community-based organizations and residents, with the goal of reducing traffic death and serious injury by 2027. The City has also committed to additionally developing procedures for implementing related initiatives including Complete Streets, Traffic Calming Measures, and Street Redesign, with an equitable focus on all public rights of way citywide.
As administrators of funding from the Centers for Disease Control's Racial & Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) grant, the YMCA of Coastal Georgia and Healthy Savannah are committed to utilizing the five-year, $3.4 million grant to foster sustainable health equity among Black residents in low-wealth neighborhoods by increasing the availability of high-quality nutrition; promoting physical activity through creating greater access to safe places to walk, run, bike and play; and encouraging stronger connections between people and the healthcare providers who serve them. For more information on the Activity-Friendly Routes to Everyday Destinations Neighborhood Plan, visit https://healthysavannah.org/
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