No school zone where kids hit in Round Rock; city explains zone criteria

The Round Rock Independent School District will evaluate this intersection to see if it warrants a crossing guard. (KXAN Photo/Lauren Kravets)
The Round Rock Independent School District will evaluate this intersection to see if it warrants a crossing guard. (KXAN Photo/Lauren Kravets)

ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — A 15-year-old Cedar Ridge High School student is expected to make a full recovery after a car hit him on his bicycle Wednesday afternoon on Gattis School Road near Double Creek Drive.

“There was a ton of traffic backed up, and all we saw was the ambulances.” Brittany Willgues can see the intersection from her house. “I assumed of course it was another car accident because there are quite a few of them around here on this street.

A mile west of that intersection, 12-year-old Shaylah Dame died after being hit on her bicycle in 2010. The city later installed a traffic light at the intersection of Gattis School Road and Windy Park Drive.

In March of 2014, a car crashed into a 17-year-old running across Gattis School Road by Double Creek Drive.

A month earlier, a 12-year-old boy was hit while riding his bicycle in the cross walk on Round Rock Ranch Boulevard as a car was turning on to Gattis School Road. It happened across from Cedar Ridge High School, which is not a designated school zone.

Round Rock city leaders say they must follow state guidelines that help determine school zones.

“The criteria has to do with what type of school is it, a high school doesn’t have the same kind of legislative requirements as a grade school or junior high does; distance, traffic patterns, traffic flows,” explains Gary Hudder, director of transportation for the city of Round Rock.

The city will reevaluate the area in front of Cedar Ridge High School within the next two years, to see if they meet those requirements.

“People need to be aware that there’s kids coming out,” says Willgues.

However, Hudder says the city cannot create a school zone about 1,000 feet west of the school, on Gattis School Road at Double Creek Drive, because it’s too far from the school. Hudder says school zones can’t extend for long distances.

The Round Rock Independent School District will evaluate the intersection of Gattis School Road and Double Creek Drive, beginning next month, to see if it warrants a crossing guard.

The city is currently working on implementing a plan to widen nearly four miles of Gattis School Road, from Mays Street to Red Bud Lane. Crews will expand the existing four-lane road into a six-lane strip with a median.

The city of Round Rock is updating its transportation plan, which includes infrastructure, and they want your input. The first meeting will be held Tuesday, Sept. 20 at the Baca Center. It starts at 5 p.m.

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