Winthrop was awarded $105,000 from the Baker-Polito Administration’s Shared Streets & Spaces program, which will go toward installing parklets in the Center Business District (CBD) as well as improving bicycle safety.
Town Manager Austin Faison applied for the award on June 30 and clarified the vision over the following month.
DPW Director Steve Calla has been researching the cost of installing parklets in the CBD. A parklet is a mini-park that takes up the space of several parking spaces where the public can stop and rest while visiting a commercial area. It is a temporary structure that can be relocated when necessary.
Funding will also go toward signage for a town bicycle network. Signs and street markings make cycling easier and safer for both drivers and cyclists. Supporting cycling infrastructure encourages more people to bike around town, which can improve individual health while also decreasing carbon emissions.
The Shared Streets & Spaces program supports quick-build projects that can be completed in one month from receipt of award. It has awarded $46 million to cities and towns since it was launched in 2016. This fifth disbursement focuses on pedestrian and cyclist safety and outdoor recreation.
In total, $689,000 was awarded to nine communities in Massachusetts. The others are Belchertown, Brookline, Cambridge, Dighton, Lynn, Salem, Stoneham and Westborough.