The Palatine Village Council voted unanimously Monday, Feb. 7, to ban U-turns on the stretch of Cedar Street between Michigan Avenue and the end of the Pleasant Hill Elementary School baseball field.
This is part of the village’s ongoing efforts to improve the safety of local residents and parents dropping off and picking up their children at the aforementioned school. The previously off-limits village on the left turns into the school parking lot, which has an entrance south of Michigan Avenue, to entice parents to approach the school from the north. But that led to some parents approaching the school from the south and turning around, which created its own safety hazard.
The problem with parents coming from the south and turning left was that the parents had to pass the cars going in the opposite direction. This blocked traffic and increased the likelihood of accidents, council members said. The village expected this to cause parents to approach from the north, which would reduce conflict.
While most parents adapted to it after some initial complaints, some continued to approach from the south and turned around to enter the queue of drivers queuing in the lane heading for the south. south to enter the parking lot. While a staff report said only a ‘limited’ number of parents had done so, such behavior ‘still resulted in numerous near-misses’.
Matt Barry, Palatine’s director of public works, said the near-misses had raised concerns among residents and police, which is why he recommended a ban on U-turns.
According to the meeting brief, the ban will only apply up to 368 feet north of the Michigan/Cedar intersection, but it remains to be seen whether the ban would simply move the problem further north.
Support local news by subscribing to Journal & Topics in print or online.