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'Safety Village' sought in Glenville

"To go to a school and try to reproduce traffic safety or fire safety issues at a school is nearly impossible," said Carroll. "It is actually more cost-effective and time-effective to bring the children to a site which is already in place."

The target areas for the program are Albany, Saratoga, Rensselaer and Schenectady counties. Trained safety experts such as police officers, firefighters and health-care providers would direct programs.

"It is really intended to be a regional project, not just to benefit the Town of Glenville and the Village of Scotia," said Kathleen Toombs, also coordinating the project. "Part of the reason the site was selected was because it's right next to I-890."

Major funding for the project is expected to be obtained by September, which would follow with the site being operational by fall 2012. The organization is seeking federal and state grants available for the type of project being pursued. Currently, said Toombs, the funding appears to be available.

"If the money is there today there is no guarantee it will be there in the near future. I would think that probably there is a guarantee that it won't be," said Toombs.

To help raise funds for the property, outside of grants, there are also sponsorship opportunities. If a company wanted to sponsor a portion, such as a building, it could. Also, items along the streetscape, such as street signs, could be purchased and named.

Before town officials make any decision on the project, funding sources need to be secured by the organization. With schools and groups paying a fee to use the facility, the hope is to remain self-funded with the possibility of ongoing grant funding.

"Going to the facility in Jamestown, it has actually been open for over a year now and it has become the hub of the community," said Carroll of a similar project in Chautauqua County.""

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