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City Study of Askins’ Options Ongoing

City Study of Askins’ Options Ongoing

A study of options aimed at relieving morning and afternoon traffic congestion at Ralph Askins School remains in the works, according to city officials.

The study got its start last August when a Twin Oaks resident voiced his concerns about safety related to traffic there to the former Fayetteville Board of Mayor and Aldermen. Noting that he had observed a child breaking away from a parent amid heavy traffic on Second Avenue one afternoon, Dick Farrar urged the board to consider adding crosswalks and stop bars along the street, particularly at Second’s intersections with Shady Lane and Bagley Drive.

 Those concerns prompted City Board members to ask that the City School System’s director of schools, city administrator, police chief and public works director work together to determine what measures could be taken to enhance safety along the streets impacted by traffic at the school.

 In a “Weekly Issues of Interest” report issued by City Administrator Scott Collins Aug. 24 to members of the City

Board, he noted that department leaders were monitoring traffic patterns and meeting regularly in an effort to enhance safety and alleviate congestion. A proposal that would increase traffic lanes and parking in the rear of the school was taking shape, he wrote.

 And in the first week of September, a drone was flown by city officials over Ralph Askins School to determine the best path for a prospective lane and holding area.

 In the board’s September work session, officials reported that after consultation with local engineer Tom Bailey and

Lincoln Paving, the cost of installing the holding area might amount to $50,000. A draft sketch of the proposed holding area was also submitted to the board, and after lengthy discussion, the board directed staff to continue their review of the situation and develop a more detailed plan.

 During the City School System’s strategic planning session, held Nov. 28, public works was asked to move forward with an engineering plan that would enhance safety and alleviate congestion.

 Preliminary plans, detailing a roadway and parking lot design done by Bailey, were presented to City School Board Dec. 3, and school board members voted to move forward with the drawings.

 As of Friday, survey work had been conducted at the request of Bailey – “Once a recommended design is received, it will be presented to each of the respective boards and committees for their consideration,” said Collins. Officials have also indicated that they don’t expect the design to have an impact on Kiwanis Park, located just beyond the school.

 “We wouldn’t do anything to close that park down,” said City Mayor Michael Whisenant. “There’s not been any intention of anything like that.”

 - Article from the Elk Valley Times | Wednesday, March 20, 2019 edition

*Image from Google Maps