Sandy Springs receives $800,000 for greenway, sidewalk projects

State Transportation Board Vice Chairman Garland Pinholster announced that the City of Sandy Springs will receive $800,000 in Transportation Enhancement (TE) funding from the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT).

Pinholster praised State Reps. Wendell Willard, R-Sandy Springs, Joseph Wilkinson, R-Sandy Springs, State Sens. Judson Hill, R-Marietta, Dan Weber, R-Dunwoody, and Dan Moody, R-Alpharetta, along with State Reps. Harry Geisinger, R-Roswell and Fran Millar, R-Dunwoody, as having been instrumental in securing the funding.Two projects will benefit from the grants:

$100,000 is for sidewalks along Roswell Road from Johnson Ferry to Abernathy. It will include the installation of nine-foot sidewalks, two-foot brick pavers, pedestrian-scale lighting, crosswalks, street trees, bus shelters and associated landscaping;

$700,000 is for the Abernathy Road Greenway. The proposal is to construct a linear park and greenway along Abernathy Road from Brandon Mill to Wright Road.

“We’re delighted to announce these grants,” Pinholster said. “The selected projects show great local government commitment to improving their community’s quality of life and their local elected leaders are to be commended.”

The TE program is federally-funded. Its goal is to enrich the transportation experience of Georgians through specific types of enhancement projects. Such projects funded by the TE program include multi-use facilities such as walking and biking trails and paths; streetscaping and landscaping projects in cities and towns; historic preservation of transportation-related facilities like railroad depots; and scenic preservation of views and scenic byways.

This year, the Georgia DOT received a total of 285 eligible applications representing combined requests for more than $176 million in federal funds from all 13 congressional districts. In this selection round, $54.6 million in federal funds are available for Fiscal Years 2008 and 2009 for distribution statewide.

Up to 80 percent of the funds being used for these projects have been provided by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), with the local government funding the remainder of the total project cost.

Fire Dept. offers emergency response training

The Sandy Springs Fire Rescue Department is enrolling volunteer trainees for the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program.

The CERT program teaches disaster preparedness and response skills, such as fire safety, search and rescue, and disaster medical operations. It enables CERT volunteers to assist others when professional responders have not arrived on a scene.

“CERT members can be first responders and can sustain efforts until (help) arrives,” said Sandy Springs Fire Rescue Capt. Kareem Fannin.

The 30-hour program is available to businesses, homeowner’s associations, churches and synagogues. Trainees will receive an emergency response kit, CERT and outreach materials.

Training, supported by an $8,000 Homeland Security grant, will begin this spring. For information visit www.sandyspringsga.org.