Dangerous crosswalk outside Sacajawea Elementary getting a facelift

Dangerous crosswalk outside Sacajawea Elementary getting a facelift
Posted at 5:10 PM, Feb 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-19 19:10:02-05

CALDWELL — Walking to school, on one side of Illinois Avenue in Caldwell, is a breeze. That's not the case on the other side of the crosswalk.

"It's not really a safe place for kids," said principal of Sacajawea Paul Webster.

Sacajawea is the principle school for the Canyon Hill area in Caldwell. Illinois Avenue is the key link between canyon hill and the interstate, but kids can't get across it. to school or back home safely on foot.

"There are 4 crosswalks that basically go nowhere, they go to a street without a sidewalk," said Webster.

Webster says of the 500 kids enrolled, 50 to 100 live in this area and have the ability to walk, so safety is a key concern. The city put in a grant with the state to build a sidewalk that's signaled and accessible to the largest number of kids.

They've recently started rerouting irrigation and moving pipes in the area… but still fences and signs need to be moved before the sidewalk can be put in.

"During winter time it's pretty dark out here and gets foggy in the mornings and without a clear signal that's flashing, you wouldn't be able to see a kid that's crossing in front of the school," Said Webster.

Students who are the regular walkers want to see those improvements to their daily routes.

"It was scary because there was so many cars coming through," said 3rd grader Kira Dahle.

A concern voiced by their crossing guard as well.

"It definitely makes me apprehensive when I see them walking across the street and they're in the street and there's a lot of cars I mean it's right after school," said employee Lana Keisha Purifoy.

Beyond the obvious safety concerns, the problem could impact their foot traffic inside the classroom.

"If they are scared that may make them hesitant to come to school," said Webster.