Traffic concerns lead to discussion amongst Dunlap School Board leaders

Local News

DUNLAP, Ill. (WMBD) — The Dunlap School Board is working on ways to end the traffic issue surrounding its high school and middle school near Route 91.

Dr. Scott Dearman, superintendent of Dunlap School District, said with the school’s growing population, it’s becoming more difficult for drivers to enter and exit the area at the same time.

“With the number of not only student drivers that we have but parents that drop their children off and then also the school buses, it’s a very highly congested area,” Dearman said.

Dearman said the area leading into the high school entrance is so congested at certain times that drivers could possibly get backed up into Route 91.

“There’s a congestion point right in front of the high school that if you miss that window by even a minute or two, it could take you ten minutes to get into the parking lot and park or drop your child off,” Dearman said.

He said the school board will look over traffic study proposals from two different companies at its meeting Wednesday. Dearman said they’ve been looking into this issue for the last eight months or so and have implemented better signage to keep people moving in the right direction as well as changing lanes for buses and drop-offs.

“The proposals right now, they’ll set up traffic cameras and do traffic counts and see what the actual volume is at different times of the day and then they’ll make suggestions off that,” Dearman said.

Dearman said the quote of the proposals ranges anywhere from $12-$18,000 dollars. He said a big help could include further adjusting school release times or even adding another exit from the schools to Route 91 or Legion Hall road.

“Another idea would be a secondary exit so to speak so we can get more people out in different ways in a faster way than what we currently are,” Dearman said.

Data from the district shows enrollment at Dunlap Community Unit School District 323 reached a new peak this school year with 4,568 students.

Dearman said at the moment this is only informational and the board will make a decision next month on whether or not they’ll accept either proposal and move forward.

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