Open Standard Media Player version 1.3
TWO HARBORS - A transportation initiative that promotes safety and a healthier lifestyle has made its way to the Northland.
The Safe Routes to School project is in more than 10,000 schools across the nation.
Now it’s helping kids and their families on an 11 mile trail in Two Harbors.
Elected heavy hitters and neighbors of the city unveiled six re–vamped miles of the trail.
"We are going to see here in Two Harbors a premiere facility ranked among the best in the nation," Former Representative Minnesota Jim Oberstar (D) said.
The Safe Routes to School trail, as it's being called, started when Oberstar secured funds to improve the trail for students walking or biking to school.
"I am just so thrilled to be here to see this happen, see that it came from the people and is going to benefit the people," said Oberstar.
The trail system loops around busy Highways 61, 2 and CSAH 26 all leading to Two Harbors High School.
"A real good heavy duty engineering design that is going to stand the test of time," said Al Goodman with the Lake County Highway Department.
While the trail is all about safety there's also a bigger–picture strategy.
Project officials say the trail is meant to change an entire generation by promoting a healthier lifestyle.
"We know that kids who lead active lives are much more likely to grow into healthy active adults,” Two Harbors Mayor Randy Bolen said. “Kids who walk and bicycle to school arrive focused and ready to learn."
"I receive letters from school children saying I feel so much better after biking to school and so much better biking home at night that I’m ready to do my homework," said Oberstar.
So far six miles have been re-vamped and five more remain for a project providing safe non- motorized travel while instilling healthy life-long habits.
Project officials say they need at least $2 million to complete the rest of the trail.
They’re hoping to finish the project by 2016.