Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX


January 8, 2013

Council to consider ordinance to rectify student parking issue near high school

JACKSONVILLE — On Tuesday, the City Council will consider adopting a new ordinance primarily designed to prevent students from blocking access to Henderson Street homes during class hours.

Residents in the area have long complained that the presence of student or parent cars has made it difficult to enter or leave their houses.  Students have been parking on Henderson in front of the school because Jacksonville High School does not allow for parking along Mason Street, according to the city council agenda.

Many of the residents feel trapped by the flow of students and traffic, officials said.

"They are all  affected," City Manager Mo Raissi said.

If passed, the ordinance would last from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and would include parking on both sides of the 1100 block of Henderson including 50 feet beyond the southwest corner of the intersection of Avalon Street.

The matter has been studied at length by Police Chief Reece Daniel, whose ideas are the basis for the proposed ordinance, Raissi explained.

The chief surveyed that area and spoke with several residents to get a clear picture of the problem and came up with the proposal to impose "no parking" zones in the 1000 and 1100 blocks of Henderson Street.

"In doing so, the parking is spread thinner in the problem area and it will allow for motorists to stay to the right on Henderson Street while waiting for children to come from school – thereby creating an open avenue for residents to bypass the traffic and access their homes at any time of day," the chief said in his proposal.

The chief said there will need to be intensive enforcement and education for one or two weeks to gain voluntary compliance in not blocking the street or driveways, the chief said.

"This can be done as a public service by members of the patrol division and I believe it will satisfy both residents of the area and citizens who have children attending the school," he said.

The no parking zones should be the same as those on Mason Street in order to allow visitors and family to utilize the available parking on weekends, nights and holidays, he added.

Dr. Joe Wardell, JISD Superintendent said he believes the chief city council members have the right idea.

"I think it would probably help traffic flow," he said.


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