Age-Friendly Funding Alert: MassDOT Shared Winter Streets and Spaces

The latest round of Mass. Department of Transportation’s (MassDOT) Shared Winter Streets and Spaces features new project categories that award bonus points for proposals that include older adults.

Through the Shared Streets and Spaces Grant Program, MassDOT seeks to assist municipalities in meeting their individual needs for more and safer outdoor recreation, commerce, community activities, and mobility.

The recently announced round of funding that recognizes dual challenges of winter weather and the pandemic has noted they will award bonus points for projects that include “Safe Routes for Seniors, including safe walking and bicycling facilities within one mile of senior centers, housing for elders, and travel corridors used by seniors.”

The Shared Streets and Spaces Program was established in June 2020 and was immediately popular with Massachusetts cities and towns. The program provided grants from $5,000 to $300,000 for quick-build improvements to sidewalks, curbs, streets, on-street parking spaces, and off-street parking lots in support of public health, safe mobility, and renewed commerce.

Over 100 days, $10.2 million was allocated to 103 municipalities to implement 123 projects, from pop-up bikes lanes to safe ‘parklets’ for outdoor dining to improved crosswalks to dedicated bus lanes, as well as a range of traffic calming measures.

Given the summer success of the Shared Streets and Spaces program, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation is now relaunching the program in order to help municipalities address the challenges of winter and the ongoing public health crisis.

More information, including FAQ’s and application deadlines, are available here.