By JIM MAURER
CAREY — Meeting in special session Thursday, Carey Council rescinded one motion and passed a second motion as part of its continuing effort to improve traffic flow on school property during school hours.
Last week, council approved a motion to close one entrance from the main school parking lot and make the road through Memorial Park one-way toward the school.
On Thursday, council rescinded the motion to close the entrance and make the road through Memorial Park one-way.
The second motion was approved to close a section of Memorial Park road between the high school baseball diamond and the tennis courts, and open the previously closed exit from the parking lot. The remainder of the park road will have two-way traffic, and there will be a “no outlet” sign posted at the park entrance.
The changes are expected to be made today.
The motion was approved 5-1 with Councilman Bob Styer voting against it.
After the meeting, he said it’s too close to the start of the school year on Monday to make a change now. He would like to have a traffic study done by the state Department of Transportation to determine if there are “better alternatives.”
Mayor Jenn Rathburn said a traffic study would cost an estimated $10,000 to $12,000.
During a nearly 45-minute discussion, Councilman Dario Troiano said the changes approved Thursday will provide a “safe walkway” for park patrons without any vehicles in the area. He suggested eventually removing the road between the barricades and planting grass to provide more park area. The village will save thousands of dollars, he said, without having to maintain the road.
Councilman Jacob Wentz said with the changes, there will be several parking lots in the area easily accessible to the nearby football stadium.
The main parking lot holds 275-300 vehicles and about 200-225 vehicles are parked there daily, Carey school Superintendent Mike Wank said.
Wentz said the changes approved Thursday will “eliminate a lot of the traffic issues.”
Troiano said the changes will “make it a lot safer for everybody.”
At a school board meeting earlier this week, Rathburn and two council members met with the school board, and officials agreed to establish a joint committee to discuss a long-term solution.
“We have to come up with a long-range plan,” Wank said.
Wentz and council President Anthony Fletcher, Rathburn, village Administrator Roy Johnson and Police Chief Rich Kesler will represent the village on the joint committee, which will meet in several weeks. Wank, school board President Greg McCartney and board member Matt Stombaugh will represent the school.
The committee will make recommendations to council and the school board.
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