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WRGT-TV FOX 45 News :: News - Top Stories - Change Coming for K-12 Students Walking to School Without Sidewalks
Wednesday, January 30 2013, 07:36 AM EST
Change Coming for K-12 Students Walking to School Without Sidewalks
WEST MILTON -- It's one of the best school districts in the area, but the kids are having trouble just getting to school. Milton-Union school kids who walk to school have no sidewalks to get there.

"It's very dangerous, especially in the night because there's no lighting, also when the cars come around here they don't really stop so it's really dangerous. There's no sidewalks; you don't see the kids walking," said parent Carla Lewis who's been waiting for sidewalks here for nine years.

"The school suggested we walk the opposite way of the school turn around, walk that way up the block in order to be safe," Lewis said. "Yes it's a hassle I think it's an extra .4 miles."

Because ODOT is busy with many projects, this project was pushed back until 2015. But ODOT was able to shorten their calendar to get it done by 2014.

"We don't want to wait that long," said West Milton municipal manager Matt Kline. "The new school is open now. Kids are walking here on a daily basis. We need to get it done as soon as possible."

Something we weren't expecting to see while we were at the school, Tuesday. A pole has been knocked down, most likely by a car. This happened at the intersection right in front of the school were kids walk to and from everyday without a sidewalk.

"They've been rated excellent," said Kline. "They have met all 26 criteria. They have the highest ACT scores of the county. Now they just have to get there safely."

For parents like Lewis who have been waiting years for sidewalks, the question is why did it take so long.

"I actually asked that question," she said. "And they told me because there weren't enough kids that lived on this road so they were not concerned."

She thinks if you're going to build a new school, you better have plans in place for every child to get their safe.

Crews were out there taking pictures for the design of the new sidewalks. It's one of the first steps.

"After this it will go into the engineering design phase," WYCO Field Tech Tim Fielder said.

"I'm excited I see them working on things. I think it'll be safer," said Lewis. "I think the parents will allow the kids to walk to school. I'm sure there's some who don't allow the kids to walk to school because of this."

ODOT's Safe Route to School grant is funding this program. Wednesday, we are going to go to ODOT to find out why this project isn't higher on their priority list.Change Coming for K-12 Students Walking to School Without Sidewalks

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