Sunday, September 17, 2000

School project causing headaches

Traffic, parking snarled by work

By Jennifer Mrozowski
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        SYCAMORE TWP. — A $12.1 million construction project at Sycamore High School is causing parking and traffic headaches for students, parents and school administrators.

        The construction site has eaten up parking spaces, leaving some juniors and seniors without parking passes and some parents with a harrowing morning drive down Cornell Road in front of the school.

        While administrators and construction workers are trying to mitigate the problems, the snarl is likely to continue until the construction is completed in March, assistant principal James Skoog said.

        The first phase of the con struction began in May 1998, Mr. Skoog said, when 17 classrooms and a ventilation system were added to the school. This year, the school district is adding a 650-seat auditorium and a 25,000- square-foot physical education building.

        The construction site has severed two parking lots that previously joined at the high school building's front doors. The circular drive allowed circulation in the parking lot.

        Now, parents, students and staff have to drive in and exit through the one driveway in each lot. That causes a jam along Cornell Road, parents say.

        “Every time I come here to drop (my daughters) off, it's a problem,” said Montgomery resident Haq Shariq.

        Parent Suzan Neubauer, whose son Quintin is a junior at the high school, agreed.

        “It's amazing how five minutes can make such a difference,” she said.

        Ms. Neubauer said the trip to school can take her 10 minutes or 25 to 30 minutes along Cornell Road, depending on what time she leaves in the morning.

        However, she complimented the school's use of police to direct traffic.

        Mr. Skoog said two Hamilton County deputies direct traffic every morning. Additional signage also has been added to direct parents where to pick up and drop off their children.

        Since little can be done until construction is complete, school administrators are asking as many people as possible to carpool or use the high school's bus service, Mr. Skoog said.


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