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Neighborhood concerned about east elementary school

Columbia Public Schools is moving forward with a new elementary school in east Columbia.

Residents of a nearby neighborhood are concerned about safety because of a potential increase in traffic and a proposed access road to the school.

“Our subdivision doesn’t have a lot of sidewalks. A lot of them aren’t completed, so getting kids to and from school would be pretty horrendous,” said Jessica Kempf, Vineyards resident.

The proposed access road for the new school would cut through the Woodlands neighborhood and part of the Vineyards.

Residents said, that instead, parents should have access to the school off Rolling Hills Road.

“Approximately a 1,200-foot road that would go from Rolling Hills to the school — it’s a direct road. So, direct access, very similar to — if you’ve been to Alpha Heart Elementary or Beulah Ralph Elementary — very similar to the situations they have done in the past,” said Kempf.

The Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission was set to take up the issue in early October but it was tabled. CPS said it needed more time to field questions from the city about the project.

“Everybody seems to believe that this is the right solution. It’s the right thing to do for CPS and for our kids,” said Kempf.

The access road issue will be brought up at the next Planning and Zoning Commission meeting, which is Nov. 5.

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