By Stu Barab
In August last year a group of volunteers from both the Town Creek HOA and Forest Meadow Neighborhood Association met to discuss issues about Skyview student safety. Specific concerns were about the speeding traffic on Meadowknoll, heavy pedestrian and car traffic congestion in front of the school during student release, plus the general disregard for safety by students and parents crossing the streets.
As a result, and under the leadership of new principal Katrina Collins, multiple Skyview initiatives have been completed to improve the situation:
- Redesigned traffic flow during afternoon student release. Only students to be picked up are released in front of the building. Walkers and bus pickups are released from the north and south sides. This new process has significantly reduced the traffic jams and pedestrian crossing of Meadowknoll; increasing safety for all.
- Adult traffic directors assigned. Two teachers (in safety vests) now direct car traffic in and out of the driveway. Traffic has been divided into two lanes (nearest the building for K – 2 and the outer lane for grades 3 – 6 ). In addition, a few of the older students now assist teachers to facilitate pickup along the driveway “island.”
- New traffic cones on Meadowknoll. To aid car traffic flow in front of the building.
- A new training module installed. “How to Safely Cross the Street” has been added to school curriculum and is now taught during PE class.
You may have noticed other safety improvements negotiated with the City of Dallas by representatives of Town Creek HOA and the Forest Meadow Neighborhood Association:
- New ADA (American Disabilities Act) style cut-out curbs were constructed along the north side of Meadowknoll from Skyview to Forest Springs Rd.
- Crosswalks were newly established and painted at the intersections; including the one at Meadowknoll & Forest Springs.
- Various traffic and school zone signs were upgraded, and the visibility of existing signs improved.
- Speed study was completed by the city. Recorded speeds were not high enough to warrant the addition of a stop sign at Heatherdale or the installation of road humps along Meadowknoll. Traffic speed is still a reasonable concern around the Meadowknoll curve starting at Forest Springs.
Skyview parking issues:
- Parking continues to be an issue on Atherton, Heatherdale, Meadowknoll and Whitehurst. The current Skyview parking lot has only 50 spots and current employee staffing is more than 100.
- Richardson ISD is evaluating various solutions; including construction of a parking lot on the west side of the school Annex which borders Whitehurst.
- More to follow…