- Associated Press - Thursday, August 21, 2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Nearly 20 Tennessee communities are getting grants to encourage elementary and middle school students to walk and bike.

Gov. Bill Haslam announced the Safe Routes to School grants this week for 17 municipalities.

The Safe Routes to School Program is a statewide initiative designed to make bicycling and walking to school a safer and more appealing alternative for students.

The funds totaling $1.8 million will be used by schools to improve sidewalks, crosswalks and signs and fund walking and biking educational activities.

The grants are made possible through a federally funded program administered by the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

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