Cleveland and Athens beat Chattanooga for a state grant city leaders wanted to use to build a protected bike lane on Broad Street and a cycle-friendly path in St. Elmo.

Both Southeast Tennessee towns will use their $500,000 grants to build sidewalks. Cleveland also will construct three protected bus shelters on two of the town's major routes.

In 2013, the Tennessee Department of Transportation received 37 applications from cities that proposed local projects to improve the way people travel on bicycles and on sidewalks or get around on public transportation. The total amount requested was $30 million. Thirteen cities were selected.

State Sen. Todd Gardenhire, R-Chattanooga, who won Andy Berke's seat in 2012 when Berke decided to run for mayor, said he lobbied the Department of Transportation for Cleveland's request because officials asked him. No one from Chattanooga asked, he said.

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