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Can something be done to help with traffic congestion on Holly Tree Road in the afternoons?

Ken Little

Wilmington traffic officials were on site this week looking at the situation, said Donald Bennett, city traffic engineer.

The field investigation took place “to make sure it isn’t an anomaly,” Bennett said.

“We’re working with the schools to try to minimize the number of cars they have waiting for children in the afternoon and therefore minimize the stacking and queuing,” he said.

City traffic officials examined traffic patterns near Holly Tree Elementary School three years ago.

“There was some stacking, but it was not extending out to Holly Tree Road,” Bennett said. “We’ve seen a trend in the last few years (where) we have an increasing amount of parents picking up and dropping off their kids. This is something we are working on with the schools.”

Bennett said if the city traffic division “confirms a symptom occurring on a regular basis, then we will see what is causing the symptom and we address the root cause, not the symptom.”

Holly Tree Elementary School also has seen increased enrollment in recent years, Bennett added, meaning there are more students to transport to and from school.

“There are a number of factors that go into this, none of which I can point my finger at and say that’s what caused it. It’s a combination of factors,” Bennett said. “We just continue to work with the schools and investigate it as best we can. We will work toward a solution and we will have to coordinate with the schools.”

User-contributed question by:
Randy K.

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5 Responses to “ Can something be done to help with traffic congestion on Holly Tree Road in the afternoons?”

  1. On September 24, 2010 at 9:26 pm Concerned mom wrote:

    I am one of those parents waiting in line to pick my son up at school. You have to get there by 2:00 if you want to be in the parking lot and not on Holly Tree road. My biggest issue with this is that there’s a sheriff there in the morning, but not in the afternoon. You have the same and maybe even more cars, childcare vans, and buses in the afternoons so why isn’t there a sheriff there in the afternoons? I also think it would help, if there’s not going to be a sheriff in the afternoons, to make it a right turn only coming out of the school. You’ve got cars blocking Holly Tree on the left, cars wanting to turn into the school from the right, cars driving in the turn only lane because they don’t want to go into Holly Tree school and wants to continue down the road. You’ve got cars wanting to go straight across. There’s cars coming out of the school trying to go left. Cars trying to get out to the right.Plus on top of all the traffic, there’s a crossing guard who tries his best to make sure the children get across safely. I’m really surprised there hasn’t been a wreck or worse than that, a child hit by a vehicle. There needs to be something done before one of those things happens.

  2. On September 25, 2010 at 12:18 pm mama e wrote:

    The issue is not school traffic. The issue is the length of the green light on College Rd., and how infrequently it turns red.

  3. On September 29, 2010 at 8:54 am Landon wrote:

    That traffic light at college rd. has been the issue with Holly Tree since I moved here in ’98

  4. On September 29, 2010 at 9:05 am Why can't wrote:

    Why do all these parents need to pick their children up from school, are they too good for the bus or not capable of walking. Even at the HS level there is a line of cars waiting to pick up their children.

  5. On October 4, 2010 at 11:24 pm required wrote:

    The busing issue could easily solve the problem. Too many parents drop/pick up kids. I rode the bus until I could drive and I’m ok…got a lot of homework done on the ride too. Reasoning is that they’re on the bus too long because it’s driving all around trying to fill it up and make it cost effective to the school system. If more/most kids in a neighborhood would ride, the bus would consistently fill up quicker and the school system would shorten the route and send a different bus to another neighborhood, which would in turn shorten the length of time riding on the bus. Gotta have buy-in from the parents and the school system. Think of how much time parents would gain by not driving to and from school twice a day.

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