Summer Work To Save School Year Traffic

It's summer. And while the kids are away at play, Village, county and school officials are hard at work. In an effort to improve safety and traffic around Coral Reef Elementary, a meeting took place July 8th to brainstorm ideas about traffic flow during school hours.

“This was our kickoff meeting to bring several entities together and discuss ways to work together,” explained Palmetto Bay Manager Ed Silva. “This same process was extremely successful last year at Perrine Elementary.”

Coral Reef Elementary Principal Christina Guerra, along with key staff met with Palmetto Bay Village Manager Ed Silva, Police Commander Gady Serralta and several County officials to tour and discuss potential improvements to physical attributes, school workflow and street configurations. “We want to provide more safety for our kids and improve the circulation of traffic,” explained Silva. “It’s part of Palmetto Bay’s comprehensive traffic plan.”

Discussion focused on the drop-off and pick-up processes, school parking and a new initiative from the Miami-Dade School Board to encourage carpooling. By having County traffic engineers, school police officers and traffic engineers on-site, the group went from theoretical improvements to real-world possibilities.

One major topic was utilizing some “dead space” parallel to the Coral Reef Playground as additional parking. This could move lots of cars off the street and into the lot during heavy drive-time. The land is owned by Palmetto Bay and with the blessing of the Council and a combined budget process by the Village and the School Board, it could be done relatively quickly.

The group endeavors to do as much as possible before school gets back in session, with additional work to continue during the school year.