New Windsor supervisor concerned about Union Avenue parking by Heritage school

Parents of students at Heritage Middle School park along Union Avenue waiting for their children at the end of the school day

NEW WINDSOR – Parents are parking along Union Avenue near the Heritage School in New Windsor even though it is posing a potential traffic hazard.

“The New Windsor Police Department doing all they can do to help prevent a serious accident from occurring at that location,” said Town Supervisor George Meyers. “The county (your road) and the school have an obligation to help rectify this situation.”

The supervisor is worried about the situation. “It is just a matter of time before we have a serious accident at that location with motorists driving in the opposite lane to avoid illegally parked cars waiting to pick up students,” he said.

Meyers would like the county to install no-parking signs along that stretch of road.

Orange County PDW Commissioner Erik Denega said the county Department of Public Works has been evaluating the town’s request for ‘No Parking or Standing’ signs along Union Avenue in the vicinity of the Heritage Middle School.

“This appears to be more of a school internal circulation/operations issue and/or enforcement issue as vehicles should not be parking or standing within the travel lanes of a public highway nor crossing the double yellow line to pass,” Denega said. “We have been in touch with both the local police department and the school district regarding the issue and our engineers are assessing the appropriateness of the town’s request.   We recommend that the town and school officials coordinate to address the issue in conjunction with the county’s review of signage.”

Newburgh school district spokeswoman Cassie Sklarz said all of the district’s schools “work with local law enforcement to develop an arrival and dismissal plan to alleviate congestion and promote safety. Due to the physical landscape at Heritage Middle School, families have been provided specific timeframes for pick up and drop off. Beginning last school year, a neighboring school is used for cars to safely line up, should they arrive outside of those time frames, to wait as school buses clear school grounds.”

Sklarz said the information “is communicated to families at the beginning of the year and families are continually directed by security monitors each day. Unfortunately, the school district holds no authority outside of school property and continues to rely on the strong relationship we’ve developed with the New Windsor Police Department.”

She said the school district is working with consultant CSARCH to review traffic patterns to help identify any safety issues that may exist.


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