Akins traffic problems increase with construction of nearby apartments

As the issue grows exponentially, travel time escalates while safety deteriorates

Brenda Amaya-Rangel, News Editor

It’s been a long day at school and all you want to do is go home. You get on the school bus and before you can even get to the end of Old San Antonio Road, the bus gets stuck in traffic.

Just imagine how uncomfortable it would be on a hot day with no air conditioning and no air coming through the windows.

Traffic congestion is an everyday struggle for students and teachers at Akins when they try to leave the campus after school. It doesn’t matter what road you take — either way you will be stuck in traffic and you will be out of your mind with frustration. Oh, and let’s not forget that the new apartments being built on Old San Antonio Road will cause even more traffic. That road is already narrow and dangerous as it is and now it’s going to be even more packed than ever.

Students who take the school bus have to wait around 10 minutes in traffic because of the incoming cars that pass by on Old San Antonio Road and the FM 1626 intersection. Accidents are bound to happen in that particular intersection because there’s no traffic light. That intersection is in a serious need of a traffic light to prevent any future accidents from happening.

According to an Annual Crime and Traffic Report by the Austin police department in 2015, there were 93 fatal crashes in Austin that resulted in 102 deaths 54 percent was due to motor vehicles and 23 percent was due to pedestrians.

Also teachers or students who drive to school and leave campus by the front of the school can’t see the incoming cars on S. First Street because of all the cars that are parked along the sidewalks, which is really dangerous.

In the beginning of this semester, Austin ISD police officers, have made an effort to manage the traffic flow on S. First Street by blocking one of the entrances in front of the school. This way students and teachers are able to pull out of the parking lot and exit school grounds. It was the students who brought this issue to principal Brandi Hosack who decided to act upon it.

I thank the officers and Hosack for taking this action, but to really solve this problem. The city needs to designate a school zone and install traffic lights at the entrance of the school and at the intersection of Old San Antonio Road and FM 1626. Traffic is something that only gets worse with time. Besides traffic being a daily struggle and inconvenience, it can also result in lives being lost if action is not taken soon.