Heights council approves new street signs around schools

By BOB OLIVER
Times-Herald Newspapers

HEIGHTS — Due to increased traffic around schools and bus stops, the City Council, at the recommendation of the Police Department, approved several permanent traffic control devices to take affect immediately.

The new controls were approved unanimously by the council at its regular meeting Oct. 8.

Three intersections will receive stop signs, one on the east and westbound lanes of Annapolis at Hipp, a second on the east and westbound lanes of Van Buren at Hazelton and a third on the east and westbound lanes of Richardson at Nightingale.

The sign at Annapolis and Hipp is to address traffic increases in the area around Polk Elementary. The other stop signs are being placed to make the crossing of those streets safer for children heading to and from school buses.

In addition to the stop signs, three “No stopping, standing, parking” signs will be installed. Two will be on the south side of Eton, one between Culver and Bedford and the second between Croissant and Raymond, and one sign will be installed on eastbound Richardson at Nightingale.

The two signs on the south side of Eton will be effective between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Police Chief Lee Gavin said the signs on Eton were necessary because the “amount of traffic needed to park is overwhelming” at Bedford Elementary School, which is just east of the intersection.

“With people parking on both sides of the street it creates a funnel down the middle of the road,” Gavin said. “If we needed to get an emergency vehicle down the road it would be hazardous.”

Gavin also said the majority of signs that the Police Department asked for were around schools.

“We’ve been getting a lot of citizen complaints around the south end, especially near Bedford Elementary,” Gavin said.

He added that now that the signs will be installed, the police have to focus on making drivers aware of the changes.

“Now the big thing is education,” Gavin said. “We have to really work to let the parents to know that the signs are there.”

Councilwoman Lisa Hicks-Clayton thanked Gavin and the Police Department for their work and asked parents to be mindful when driving near schools.

“Drivers need to heighten their awareness when they are dropping off or picking up their children,” Hicks-Clayton said. “You need to drive with caution. It’s up to you as the adult to be aware and responsible when you’re pulling into schools or neighborhoods.”

Councilwoman Janet Badalow said she was glad the Police Department is addressing issues regarding the traffic around the schools.

(Bob Oliver can be reached at boliver@bewickpublications.com.)