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Letter: Proposed new school in Kendall would create too much traffic

 

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Regarding the article New plans for Somerset east campus (Neighbors, April 6): As discussed in this article, a charter-school company is seeking to enlarge the enrollment of a long-existing private school, Pinewood Acres, from 290 students to 1,850 students.

The representatives for Somerset presented the “Somerset Academy Bay at Pinewood Acres Traffic Impact Study – Update” to the Miami-Dade County Department of Planning and Zoning Developmental Impact Committee on March 13, 2014.

The study, which was commissioned by Somerset, basically concluded that the two-lane Southwest 97th Avenue will be able to handle the increased traffic.

The report states there would be 346 new vehicle trips during the morning peak hours for the north campus and 852 new vehicle trips during the morning peak hours for the south campus. It further states: “Although each campus will have a different AM peak hour, our analysis has assured that both campuses peak at the same time.” The study also says that one vehicle would generate two trips: one as it enters the site and one as it exits. And families with siblings may have a child in each campus and would generate four trips per car as they enter and exit each campus, according to the study.

They do not mention faculty, staff and other school-related traffic, nor the increase in traffic from the expansion of the Baptist Hospital campus, which is also accessed from the south via 97th Avenue.

The school alone would add approximately 18,000 or more vehicles per five-day school/work week to an already very busy street.

I am not nor have I ever been a traffic engineer, but common sense says that this will present an intolerable and dangerous traffic situation for the residents of the area as well as for the children who are dropped off outside of the school’s stacking areas by parents in a rush to get to work and impatient to wait in line..

I certainly hope our county commissioners will use common sense and reject their plan.

Jeffrey Glasser, Kendall

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