Traffic Inbox: No sidewalks for schoolkids worries Apopka resident

By Ryan Harper, Real Time Traffic Expert
Last Updated: Monday, August 07, 2017, 11:22 AM EDT

In this week’s Traffic Inbox, we received a message from a viewer concerned that a road in her Seminole County neighborhood may be getting too dangerous.

  • Apopka resident worries about lack of sidewalks on Curtis Drive
  • She says schoolkids don't have place to walk on busy walk-through road
  • County has targeted Curtis Drive for new sidewalk, officials say

Michelle Bigas from Apopka writes in:

"Curtis Drive in Apopka needs sidewalks. We were told we were getting them, but so far, nothing. There are lots of kids who walk here, and now a new Walmart Neighborhood Market is going up!"

This story has significance because on Thursday, children will be walking up and down Curtis Drive on their way to school or bus stops. That’s the first day in Seminole County when students return to school.

Bear Lake Elementary is only a few blocks away from Curtis Drive, and Teague Middle School is close by as well. There are also several school bus stops along the road.

All of those walking children will have one thing in common: no sidewalk to safely pass by the traffic.

Neighbors say large trucks cut through Curtis Drive to avoid State Road 436, and there are late-night street races on the road and heavy congestion at times.

Bigas said there’s also a new Walmart Neighborhood Market and a gas station being built at Balmy Beach Drive and SR 436. She’s worried that the danger will be worse if nothing is done to prevent people from cutting through. Bigas said the neighborhood was blindsided by the construction. She thinks Balmy Beach Drive will have to expand and worries taxpayers will have to foot the bill.

So what's next?

After reaching out to Seminole County, officials said they have already evaluated several streets in the area for new sidewalk construction. They said their initial analysis found that Curtis Drive, along with other residential streets near the schools, either do not have sidewalks or have missing gaps of sidewalk that need to be filled in.

They added that "based on conversations with our public works director, we have placed Curtis Drive and other adjacent streets in the queue for new sidewalk construction. The sidewalk design should start within the next fiscal year."

Seminole officials also added that the other concerns that Bigas mentioned, such as widening Balmy Beach Drive, will also be looked into further.

Thank you for your submission! And if you have a traffic issue or question at home that you want looked at, go to mynews13.com/trafficinbox and fill out the simple form.