The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

New biking and driving policies on Almond Avenue

New+biking+and+driving+policies+have+affected+pick-up+and+drop-off+on%0AAlmond+Ave.+in+an+attempt+to+clear+traffic+at+the+front+of+the+school.
Oscar Johnson
New biking and driving policies have affected pick-up and drop-off on Almond Ave. in an attempt to clear traffic at the front of the school.

Los Altos High School has implemented new changes in biking, pick-up and drop-off policies on Almond Avenue starting this semester.

The roundabout at the front of the textbook room and library in the front of the school, which has been closed for several years due to construction, has opened up again. Parents are required to go through the roundabout during pick-up and drop-off times instead of driving through the school’s main entryways. Students biking from the east side (the side with the student services building) of Almond are also required to get off their bikes before the crosswalk on Alicia Street. From there, they need to walk them through the roundabout, or through the parking lot near the Student Services building.

Also on the eastbound side, bikers and cars will no longer have to share an entryway, as all vehicle traffic will be directed through the roundabout, making it safer for students.

Assistant Principal Derek Miyahara says an easier drop-off at the beginning of school due to the new strategy.

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“The drop-off is going great, and we can handle more capacity in the turnaround,” Miyahara said. “We’re trying to let parents know it’s much easier doing that than dropping off in the back or in the parking lot.”

Despite the roundabout being shorter in length than the previous entrance at the front of the school, Miyahara notes that the traffic circle still moves faster.

“I think the reason it’s moving faster is because it is clear that there is only one entry and one exit,” Miyahara said. “The parking lots of the driveways go both ways, so it creates more flow problems.”

Miyahara also attributes the system’s efficiency to the lack of pedestrian and bike traffic. Previously, students would bike past the entry and exit of the roundabout, blocking cars from coming in and out. Traffic is now directed behind the roundabout, so parents do not have to spend extra time watching out for students and waiting for kids to cross, which also decreases the chances for car and pedestrian conflicts.

Despite the smooth drop-off, Miyahara acknowledges that the student pick-up system is not as streamlined as drop-off.

“The pick-up process is a lot harder because parents tend to come early and just wait in line, though, so far we haven’t seen the streets getting clogged, ” he said. “It’s also harder to control the students after school when they’re leaving because they just want to get their bikes and go.”

For some students, these changes have shown to be an inconvenience, especially bikers who are rushing in the morning.

“I understand that making us get off our bikes at the crosswalk, and then walking them through the roundabout is the way [the administrators] are making sure we are safe,” sophomore Anastasia Marinopoulos said. “But it’s a little annoying how long it takes when I could have just biked directly into the school before.”

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Sahana Srinivasan, Staff Writer
Oscar Johnson, News Editor

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