EPA Awards Kirkland for "Building a Healthy Community for Active Aging"
National Recognition for City Programs
Kirkland, WA – The City of Kirkland, Washington has received the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging Achievement award. This new award program recognizes outstanding community planning and strategies that support active aging and smart growth, thereby improving the quality of life of older residents. Kirkland Deputy Mayor Joan McBride received the award today in Washington, D.C.
"It is extremely exciting to be recognized with a national award," notes Mayor Jim Lauinger. "Kirkland is proud of our efforts to provide recreation programs, complimented by street design that encourages older adults to stay physically active."
The City of Kirkland offers more than 50 physical activity programs specifically designed for older adults. The Kirkland Steppers Walk Program, which is free for adults over age 50, organizes group walks through downtown twice a week during the summer. Over the next six years, the City will invest $6 million to improve sidewalk connections between commercial and residential developments to make the City more walkable.
Kirkland is the first City in the State of Washington to adopt a Complete Streets Ordinance which provides for the design of streets to meet the needs of walkers, bicyclists and drivers. Kirkland’s "PedFlag" Program is a unique pedestrian safety program which places flags at 63 crosswalks to remind drivers to yield to pedestrians. Another pedestrian safety program is the Flashing Crosswalk Program, which has incorporated flashing lights into the pavement of 30 crosswalks.
For additional information about the City of Kirkland award, please contact Carrie Hite, Deputy Director Parks & Community Services at (425) 587-3320 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ci.kirkland.wa.us/healthy.
The EPA's Aging Initiative program spearheads the multi-agency effort, which was developed in partnership with the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Council on Aging's Center for Healthy Aging, the National Blueprint Office and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, through its Active for Life program. Tomorrow, information on the seven winners will be posted to www.epa.gov/aging/bhc/awards/2007/.