WalkSanDiego, California’s largest walk advocacy organization, announced the recipients of its Kaiser Permanente Golden Footprint Awards last week.
The City of La Mesa's intergenerational walking program received one of the awards. La Mesa also tallied a second winner as volunteer Ed Clavell was honored with the Citizen Award.
Jim Stone, WalkSanDiego's executive director said, “A lot of people are demanding more walkable neighborhoods. We’re pleased to see so many projects responding to this demand by making local streets better for walking and biking.”
WalkSanDiego established the Golden Footprint Awards to honor and recognize efforts to create safer, more vibrant streets and neighborhoods. The first award was given to former Councilmember Toni Atkins in 2002 for her work to enhance walking conditions in the 3rd District.
According to Stone, “This year’s award winners have helped create better connections within communities, promoted the benefits of walking to young and old, and provided more opportunities for people to walk for shopping, accessing transit and exercising.”
The City of San Diego scored big this year, with three projects taking home awards. These include the Mike Gotch Memorial Bridge, the Balboa Park Trail Signage Project and a safety improvement project at the corner of 50th Street and University Avenue.
The City of San Marcos also fared well in the competition, garnering three awards. Recently retired Community Services Director, Craig Sargent-Beach received the Public Official Award, while the San Marcos Multi Way Boulevard project and the Barham Drive Trail project also were named as Golden Footprint winners. Another North County winner was the Maple Street Pedestrian Plaza in Escondido, which received the Pedestrian Place Making Award.
Awards were also given to a project along Balour Drive that enhanced pedestrian safety in Encinitas, and a Safe Routes to School project based at Lakeview Elementary School in Lakeside.
Voice of San Diego reporter Liam Dillon was named as the recipient of the Special Recognition Award for a series of articles detailing hazardous walking conditions and missing or damaged sidewalks around the region. WalkSanDiego recognized Dillon as the “voice of pedestrian advocacy” in San Diego’s media.
Award recipients will be honored at a gala on April 4 at the San Diego Natural History Museum. More information is available by calling WalkSanDiego at (619) 544-9255 or visiting them on the web at www.walksandiego.org.