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Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Southwest Louisiana ,
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Informer: Official says drop-off, pickup at Lake Charles school efficient

Last Modified: Friday, September 14, 2012 9:00 PM

By Andrew Perzo / American Press

Dolby School in University Place has created terrible traffic congestion on Jefferson Drive. Parents picking up their children in the afternoon form a line from the school down Jefferson and around the corner onto Dolby Street.

Entering or leaving driveways of homes in this area is difficult. It also turns Jefferson, a busy street, into one lane during this period.

Dolby School occupies most of a very large city block. The back of the school property abuts on Washington Street, Park Lane and Spring Street.

Having parents wait in this area would not directly block access to or from a residence. Also, these are less traveled streets than Jefferson Drive or Dolby Street. I think Dolby School should use the streets abutting their property for this process. There is a covered walkway to Washington from the school.

Skylar Giardina, the school system’s risk manager, looked into the problem and sent the following statement:

I observed morning and afternoon traffic at Dolby Elementary on Sept. 7.

Dolby has two locations for pickup and drop-off. They use Jefferson Drive for grades 2-5 and Washington Street for Pre-K, kindergarten and first grades.

There was no backup on Jefferson Drive in the morning. I did not observe the Washington Street location.

I arrived in the afternoon at 2:35 and there was a light rain.

Cars were already stacked on Jefferson Drive, but I walked the street and no drives were being blocked. The cars (22) did back up to Dolby Street. There were nine cars parked on Dolby Street. Again, no driveways were blocked.

The traffic began moving at 3:00 and by 3:15 there were no cars on the road.

I did walk around to the Washington Street location. There was no stack-up at 3:05. I did talk to the duty teacher. She stated that cars do back up slightly around 2:30 because Pre-K dismisses earlier.

It is my opinion that there is no problem with the current flow of school traffic. The drop-off and pickup at both locations runs very smooth and efficient.

On-ramp predates current guidelines

What is the minimum required length of an on-ramp for an interstate? Does the westbound Interstate 210-Lake Street ramp meet this requirement?

“The I-210 Lake Street on-ramp was built in the 1960s. Since then the DOTD guidelines that are used to determine the length of an on-ramp have changed,” Deidra Lockhart, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Transportation and Development, wrote in an email.

“The desirable minimum length for an interstate on-ramp is 1,000 feet, which includes the parallel acceleration lane and taper.”

The Lake Street ramp, she said, is 500 feet long.

•••

The Informer answers questions from readers each Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. It is researched and written by Andrew Perzo, an American Press staff writer. To ask a question, call 494-4098, press 5 and leave voice mail, or email informer@americanpress.com

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