PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The South Dakota Health Department has awarded $5,000 grants to four communities to assess infrastructure for walkers and bikers.
Linda Ahrendt is the department's administrator of chronic disease prevention and health promotion. She says conducting such an audit is a first step for communities to encourage residents to be active.
She says people are more active when their environment supports walking and biking.
Burke, Pierre, Rapid City and Sioux Falls each received a grant. Representatives from each have already been trained to assess walkability.
Community members and experts will walk through the cities to determine whether it's safe and appealing to do so.
Results of the assessments will influence urban design and transportation policies.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)