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Students propose plan to fix traffic

By Brandon Evans | Published Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Children aren’t only the future, they are also the present.

A class at Bridgeport Middle School is transforming how students are dropped off and picked up at their school in order to ease the daily traffic jam parents and bus drivers suffer through.

The group of 14 sixth and seventh graders have developed two viable options that might improve traffic flow during pickup. They presented those options to members of the Bridgeport school board Monday night.

The first plan was called “Swap.” It designates one lane for buses and another lane for passenger cars, called Bus Boulevard and BMS Loop, respectively.

The second option is called the “Split/Delay” plan. In this scenario, the loop will be used for picking up eighth graders, and another area will be used to pick up sixth and seventh graders. All buses will be delayed by five minutes to allow parents to get in and out.

“Have y’all consulted with the police department about this?” asked school board president Jim Bost.

“Yes,” replied sixth grader Cassady Craddock. “We met with officers, the bus barn, superintendent and the president to see how they feel about it.”

“And which one are y’all going to do?” asked board member Ken Kilpatrick.

“That is supposed to be your decision,” answered Sammy Davis, a sixth grader.

Haley Barton, another sixth grader involved in the project said they were leaning toward the split/delay plan because it would ease traffic better. The students had conducted a traffic study to determine which plan would work the best.

The students are going to have the plans in place sometime between the end of Christmas break and Feb. 12. The students are members of the Community Problem Solving class taught by Paula Shepherd, advanced academics coordinator for the district.

The class will also enter their project into a state and national problem solving competition.

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