ARDSLEY, N.Y. In an effort to make the village more walkable and to encourage children to walk to school, Ardsley is planning to install sidewalks near its schools.
The Safer Routes to School endeavor will line Heatherdell Road from Farm Road to Olympic Lane with sidewalks to ensure safer pedestrian traffic around the school district . Construction is expected to begin in the spring.
"It's all now ready to go, but winter fell upon us," said Ardsley Mayor Peter Porcino. "So we decided to start in the spring with the actual construction. I imagine we're probably looking at April."
Ardsley received a federal grant to construct the sidewalks. They had initially wanted to install sidewalks from Olympic Lane to Concord Road, but did not receive a second grant to allow them to do so. According to the former mayor of Ardsley, Jay Leon, the village applied for the grants in 2008 and they were accepted in 2009.
Porcino estimated that the most-used stretch of road on Heatherdell Road is between Farm Road and Windsong Road, as Windsong Road leads to Abington Avenue, where many residents live. The sidewalks, he said, will encourage them to walk up to Heatherdell Road and then continue their path to school.
Currently, there is no date set for the end of construction as Heatherdell Road becuase some pretty nasty sections of the sidewalk, dropping off of several feet, and it's really pretty treacherous right now, Porcino said. There are also some issues with telephone poles.
"But we're hoping to encourage more walking," Porcino said. "That's the underlying purpose of the program to encourage people to walk more. So if we improve the sidewalks there, we can encourage more people."
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