Morning Traffic Flow Being Altered At West Elementary
West Elementary parents and neighbors will encounter a change in morning traffic flow outside the school when students return later this month for the start of the 2020-2021 academic year.
Under the first reading of an ordinance passed last week by the Glenwood City Council, the following “one-way traffic” guidelines will be observed on Sharp Street on mornings when school is in session:
* From 30 minutes prior to the start of classes to 30 minutes after the start of classes, school bus traffic only will be permitted on Sharp Street from Grove Street to Myrtle.
* From 30 minutes prior to the start of classes to 30 minutes after the start of classes, regular motor vehicle traffic going eastbound on Sharp Street will be permitted from Myrtle Street to Hazel Street. No westbound traffic will be permitted between Hazel and Grove during the same time period. Signage and/or barricades will be posted to prevent traffic from traveling westbound from the Hazel – Sharp Street intersection.
* In addition to the one-way traffic regulations on Sharp Street, no parking of vehicles will be allowed 30 minutes before and after the start school on the south side of Coolidge Street, from Locust to Elm, and the west side of Grove Street - 175 feet south of Sharp.
City council member Jeremy Rodman said the morning traffic restrictions on Sharp Street are being made in the interest of public safety. Both city and school district officials have concerns about the safety of children who were previously being dropped off from vehicles along side and across the street from buses that were unloading students at the school.
“Both me and Dan (McComb) drive buses and we have seen children dart between the buses,” Rodman said at the council’s regular meeting Tuesday, July 28. “We’ve seen parents let their kids out in traffic. It’s just a matter of time before somebody gets hit. There’s been a lot of close calls.”
Glenwood Police Chief Eric Johansen said the changes are being made at the request of and with the support of the Glenwood Community School District.
Johansen said students can be dropped off from vehicles on the school playground or from Myrtle Street, near the crosswalk at the main entrance to the school.
“Parents can still drop off on Myrtle Street, like they have been, but then they have to hang a left (turn),” Johansen said.
The Glenwood Police Department will have some extra officers assigned to the area around the school the first couple weeks of classes to help facilitate the traffic flow and prevent driver confusion.
The one-way traffic flow on Sharp Street and no parking regulations on Coolidge Street will only be implemented for the 1-hour time frame in the morning. City and school officials don’t believe it’s necessary to have the same restrictions when school is dismissed in the afternoon.