I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

These HS Students Care About Infrastructure

The most boring subject imaginable for a High School student to discuss has to be something like infrastructure, right?  So it comes as a pleasant surprise to receive four well-written letters from four different District 1 High School students, the subject of which is—Infrastructure!

(I’m not going to publish the letters or the name of the students because they are all minors.  I’ll use their first names only as I describe the letters.  Additionally, I am unable to respond to these students individually because the return address they've all used is the school’s address—and it is summer. But rest assured, the issues they have raised with me, I will discuss with staff  J )

Aaron is very concerned about the area around Chemstrand Road.  From Aaron’s letter “sidewalks should be built through this area, on both sides of the road.  I have a friend, named XXXXXXXXX who was struck by a vehicle earlier this year while walking to his bus stop.  He was thrown almost 30 feet, breaking both legs and suffering internal damage to his kidneys, liver, spleen, and pancreas”

Lindsey worries about a road near her home in Beulah. “I’m sure you are well aware, but there is a speeding problem on that part of [Beulah] Road.  Cars speed down that
straight without a second thought, even though there are posted signs that state the speed limit is 35 mph” she stated in her letter.

Dylan is concerned about pedestrian safety as well, particularly along 9 Mile Road.  From his letter “I am requesting that the county officials consider keeping pedestrians safe by having sidewalks installed on Nine Mile Road in Beulah where road widening projects are underway and especially near Beulah Middle School which is still under construction.  The fact is that sidewalks can prevent pedestrians from being injured or even killed by motorists.  For every 100,000 citizens living in Florida, 2.96 pedestrians were killed on Florida roads in 2015 which has a highest rate in of the fifty states [sic].”

Noah has keyed in to a very acute traffic issue in Escambia County:  Pine Forest Road between I-10  and Nine Mile Road, where the road goes from two lanes down to one.  “During peak traffic times this single lane causes traffic to back up for miles.  Although the merging can cause traffic to be at a standstill, it can also be very usage in some situations.  As a driver I have witnessed many instances where merging cars attempts [sic] to fit in the smallest of spaces forcing the car in the lane to slam on brakes which then causes many other cars behind them to brake very sharply as well.”

I appreciate the fact that these students have taken the time and the initiative to send their county commissioner infrastructure issues of importance to them.  And all of these items are either currently being planned or looked at by staff.


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