Pedestrian safety and traffic congestion to be addressed at New Paltz Middle School

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NEW PALTZ – Significant changes to New Paltz Middle School traffic flow and parking will be realized after a capital project has been completed.
Details of the proposed pedestrian and vehicle traffic pattern were presented to the school district board of education on Wednesday evening.
“Our primary goal was to increase pedestrian and vehicular safety on and around campus, as well as improve traffic distribution and efficiency for vehicles entering and exiting the drop-off and pick-up area,” said district architect William Wisbauer.
The plan includes being able to enter and exit the middle school from either Main Street or South Manheim Boulevard. The Main Street access point will be reconfigured to allow vehicles to make a right turn into the parking lot and it will remain a right-turn-only exit. The second access point from South Manheim Boulevard will allow drivers to make either a left or right turn both onto and off of campus.
The achieve that, the current entrance from South Manheim will be closed and turned into an emergency access route, complete with a key-access gate. The half-circle driveway that is located south of the current entrance will be reconfigured to merge into the existing drop-off/pick-up line. The driveway will be widened to allow for two-way traffic.
Approval of the plan by the state Department of Transportation is pending.
Until the new plan is put in place, the district is implementing a temporary solution to address congestion with the existing traffic pattern. Beginning Friday, February 5, the middle school’s half-circle bus loop that is accessed from South Manheim will be opened and used as an additional student drop-off/pick-up area. Vehicles will enter from the south side of the loop, let students out along the existing sidewalk, and exit from the north side.