Anderson Township, Wilson Elementary Work Together to Improve Pedestrian Safety

It soon could be safer to walk or ride to Wilson Elementary School. Anderson Township and Wilson Elementary plan to roll out a new flag program aimed at making two crosswalks on Little Dry Run Road more secure for pedestrians. 

The new program uses brightly colored flags to signal drivers and raise their awareness about people in the crosswalks. Walkers and bike riders pick up orange flags on one side of the street as they ready to walk, and alert drivers of their intent to cross. Once they reach the other side, they return the flags to their holder. 

The new crosswalk program is part of a 10-year joint effort aimed at improving physical change at this and other crosswalks and also educating students, parents, and motorists at the targeted intersections. 

Another initiative focusing on encouraging children to walk or ride to school, called “Wall/Bike to School Days’ has been extremely popular and “we have seen a much greater receptivity from parents having their children walk to school,” said Wilson Principal Bob Buck, who also serves on the township’s volunteer Transportation Advisory Committee. 

“We have had a steady increase in students walking and bicycling to school; however, the two crossings of Little Dry Run continue to be concern in our community and are a barrier to even more students walking or bicycling to school,” Buck noted.  

Township and school leaders hope the new trial flag program will help address this concern. The Wilson Parent Teacher Association recently awarded a grant to the school administration to purchase flags, holders and signage for the pilot program. Anderson Township has installed the equipment and prepared educational materials to be disseminated in both print and electronic forms at the area and in the community. 

“This is a win-win opportunity to improve awareness, safety, and education on crosswalk crossings, in our school community and in the broader community as well,” noted Buck.  

Recent safety improvement efforts have included new sidewalks in this area, realigning the Little Dry Run and Wolfangel crosswalk, and expanding the school zone east of Wilson, efforts that have been supported by the Hamilton County Engineer's Office. Both crosswalks will be used for the trial flag program. 

“This effort is twofold,” said Anderson Township’s Assistant Administrator for Operations Steve Sievers. “It builds on the physical improvements that have been made here, and seeks to raise awareness of the increased numbers of walkers and bike riders using the Anderson Trails network near Wilson Elementary.” Anderson Township also plans to educate trail users and motorists regarding crosswalk rules and safety.   

The township’s 2007 Safe Routes to School Plan and resulting state grant have fostered numerous safety improvements near all nine Forest Hills Schools buildings.

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