QUEENSBURY — The new second entrance at the Queensbury campus has made traffic flow much more smoothly.
“As long as I’ve been here, this is the best traffic flow that I’ve witnessed — particularly for the high school,” said Superintendent of Schools Douglas Huntley.
The school district opened another entrance farther west down Aviation Road closer to the high school at the intersection with Cottage Hill Road.
“The second entrance has cut in half the number of people entering at any one location,” Huntley said.
The new entrance provides more queuing room for parents and students.
“For all intents and purposes, we’ve eliminated the backup on Aviation,” he said.
The new entrance provides a more direct route to the back of the high school. Because of construction, everyone is entering through the rear entrance near the “blue gymnasium.”
The traffic flow is also improved around the student parking lot. There is an entrance and exit by that lot. There is also a new bus-only route in front of the school.
“It’s easier for students to get in and out of it,” he said.
School administrators and staff have been positioned at key intersections at arrival and dismissal during the first couple of weeks of school to help direct traffic, according to Huntley.
“They’ve made a big difference,” he said.
The number of staff members doing traffic duty will gradually be reduced as the school year gets going. The assistant principals will remain.
Huntley reminded parents and students that the lot next to the new entrance is off limits for parking, because it is being used as a construction staging area for equipment — such as for the large air handling units, which will be placed on the roof.
School officials were concerned people would not use the entrance without a signal in place, but traffic is flowing.
The new entrance is going to be signalized eventually. The Town Board on Monday voted to solicit bids for construction of the traffic signal at the intersection of Aviation and Cottage Hill roads.
Queensbury Supervisor John Strough said he and Huntley; as well as Town Board member George Ferone, school Director of Facilities Rob Chapman and engineers from Barton & Loguidice sat down to discuss the situation. Strough said it will be about March before the signal can be installed. There is a four-month backlog for the steel for the pole because of the current national tariffs.
Strough agreed the new entrance is working, even without a signal. People had learned to avoid the school campus in the morning.
“Traffic was lined up back to the roundabout. Traffic was lined up back down the hill,” he said.