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Second Street to remain open near Waynesboro High School

August 22, 2007|By DON AINES

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Closed last spring as construction got under way on the $46 million expansion and renovation of Waynesboro Area Senior High School, East Second Street will remain open when school begins Monday, although morning and afternoon commuters should expect delays.

"The district has not requested it be closed" during the day or during morning and afternoon bus runs, Superintendent Barry Dallara said Monday.

Waynesboro Area School District officials got together with Waynesboro and Washington Township officials, borough and township police and bus contractors Monday for their annual transportation coordination meeting, Borough Councilman Allen Porter said.

"The most important thing we do in any changes there is the safety issue," Porter said after the meeting. He expressed concerns about students having to cross East Second Street in the afternoon to get aboard buses, calling it an "invitation for trouble."

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"The borough, as far as control of the streets and crosswalks, we're very flexible," Porter said. The borough might re-examine the issue of traffic control after school opens, he said.

In April, the borough decided to close the street between Virginia and Enterprise avenues "in the interest of safety," Dallara said.

At that time, dump trucks were crossing the street, using excavated dirt from the school site as fill on the practice field on the north side of the street, he said.

"We just had all kinds of complaints about closing that street off," Porter said.

That situation will not be in effect as the 2007-08 school year begins, Dallara said. School district personnel will control traffic as students get on and off the buses, he said.

The peak periods will be from about 7:15 to 7:30 a.m. when students are dropped off first at the high school and then at Waynesboro Area Middle School; and from about 2:15 to 2:45 p.m. when students are picked up in reverse order, Dallara said.

Dropping off students in the morning will pose less of a problem, as the buses will pull up along the south side of the street. In the afternoon, the process is reversed and buses will be parked on the north side.

With contractors' vehicles and equipment allowed to park on the north side, the street will be congested with buses and students crossing the street, Police Chief Ray Shultz said.

"There's just no way ... I see you getting through the borough in any quick hurry" during the morning and afternoon bus runs, Shultz said. He suggested that motorists avoid using East Second during those times of the day.

For parents driving students, he suggested the drop-off and pick-up be made a block or two from the schools when possible to avoid further congestion.

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