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Commission tables vote on zoning for new elementary school in Columbia

The Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission tabled a vote Thursday night pertaining to access to the new East Elementary school.

Residents of the Woodlands and Vineyards neighborhoods in Boone County filled the city hall chambers Thursday night to express disapproval of a current proposal.

ABC 17 News reported last month residents said they’re concerned the increased traffic in the area would create a safety hazard.

Columbia Public Schools said they received a call from the city about an hour before the meeting with multiple questions about the proposal. CPS said it needs more time to answer those questions.

Residents who spoke at the meeting said one of the biggest concerns is the increased traffic the area would see if the proposal is approved.

Some residents said they think the school needs a separate, direct entrance, rather than using the neighborhoods to access the school.

Others expressed concerns about the possibility of connecting the Woodlands and Vineyards neighborhoods.

A traffic engineer spoke briefly about a traffic study done on the area that wrapped up this week.

He said the study showed a 15 percent buffer and that the increased traffic would be a concern.

Commissioners said the current proposal will likely change and that the public will have an other chance to comment before a vote is made.

ABC 17 News talked to several residents who said they feel there should have been more of a community discussion about the issues before the new school was approved.

An HOA representative echoed the same sentiments in her comments.

Residents said they are not opposed to the new school, only to the current proposal regarding access to the school.

The issue has been tabled until the November 5 meeting.

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