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Batavia, IL

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2017

Project Category: Engaging people in transportation options/safety

Description: Local officials and community organizations hoped to increase pedestrian and bicycle traffic in downtown Batavia. To do this, the Batavia Environmental Commission, Batavia Bicycle Commission, the WellBatavia Initiative and Batavia Maitreet undertook a research and promotional campaign. They hosted a walk and bike audit that taught residents urban biking skills, such as how to load a bike onto a public bus. The initiative then paired participants with residents of a local retirement community, as well as with families with small children, to help them learn about biking. The group produced a 15-minute video documentary presenting the town's history, showcasing its pedestrian and bike infrastructure and highlighting the need for future improvements. In 2022, Batavia announced it would create a bicycle and walking plan to improve city trails and make intersections safer.

Milwaukee, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Engaging people in transportation options/safety

Description: This project creates a traffic calming lending library in Milwaukee, giving residents the power to try out traffic safety designs on their street so they can understand what options would most effectively address their concerns.

Wheat Ridge, CO

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2017

Project Category: Engaging people in transportation options/safety

Description: Localworks has been working for years to improve Wheat Ridge's 38th Avenue corridor and create a main street destination for the city. Its Activate 38 program aims to promote safe walking, biking and wheelchair rolling along 38th Avenue west of Kipling Street. To support this goal, Localworks staged the Roll, Stroll and Strut Fest at a local park. Local partners included the city parks and recreation department and Bicycle Colorado. As part of the event, Localworks obtained a permit to take over a street near the park to showcase planters, bollards and other devices that can calm traffic, making streets safer for pedestrians, cyclists and wheelchair users. Localworks continues to promote healthy mobility along 38th Avenue and hosted an all-abilities bike cruising event in the neighborhood in 2021.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Washington, DC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Capturing data and feedback from residents

Description: The 1882 Foundation hoped to strengthen community identity and increase civic engagement in DC's Chinatown, particularly among older adults. The Foundation designed a digital map featuring stories about places with historical and cultural significance to the neighborhood's longtime community members, including past and present residents and leaders. The Foundation distributed storytelling kits, which included tools to help participants tell their stories by writing and recording audio. Project organizers provided storytellers with bilingual instructions in English and Mandarin. To promote the initiative, the Foundation held a Mid-Autumn Festival event at the Wah Luck House, an affordable housing complex. Organizers say the digital platform will help inform urban planning policies by ensuring community priorities are included in redevelopment proposals for Chinatown.

Washington, DC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: This project activated a space outside the Genesis apartment community. Volunteers painted murals and installed lighting, planters and seating. This enabled organizers to state a fall harvest festival for residents.

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