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Seneca Valley High School

Letter to County Councilmember Craig Rice, March 12, 2018

Dear Councilmember Rice,

Action Committee for Transit is writing to ask you to ask the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) to make county roads around Seneca Valley High School (SVHS) safe for students who walk to school.

We recently testified to support the transportation recommendations in the draft MARC Rail Communities sector plan. For the area around SVHS, these recommendations include a road diet on Middlebrook Road, extending the Urban Road Code area, and designating the area as a Bicycle and Pedestrian Priority Area. Unfortunately, the sector plan will not go to the County Council until 2019, and after that, the improvements must be funded. Future actions will not protect the SVHS students who are walking to school now.

Consequently, we would like MCDOT to immediately take the following actions for each county road around SVHS:

  1. Determine a road design that is safe for pedestrians even with inevitable human error, per the county's Vision Zero Policy. If the road's functional classification does not permit that design, then change the classification to one that does.
  2. Apply a road diet with plastic and paint to reduce the design speed to 25 or 30 mph. Also, specifically for Middlebrook Road, reduce the number of lanes from three each way to two.
  3. Implement the recommendations of the December 2017 Middlebrook Road Pedestrian Safety Road Audit, including leading pedestrian intervals, reduced turn radii, and marked crosswalks and better street lighting at unsignalized intersections.


Ronit Aviva Dancis

Action Committee for Transit