By KAROLYN GEPHART
The City Council of Pearland is establishing school zone speed limits using the provisions of the Texas Transportation Code and extending certain times and limits upon certain streets and highways in the City. The second and final reading of the ordinance was completed at the Council meeting Aug. 14.
Schools in Pearland, Alvin and Pasadena ISD are within city limits.
The City’s Engineering Department completed the analysis of all the existing school zones as well as the new Shirley Dill Brothers elementary school expected to be completed for this 2017/2018 school year.
City of Pearland Ordinance No. 1497, adopted in January 2014, consolidated multiple ordinances into one ordinance to establish 25 school zones within the City limits. The consolidation occurred because each time there were changes to school zones, the City had to adopt multiple revised ordinances.
With a single ordinance the City can just adopt one revised ordinance when a change to multiple school zones occurs.
The School Zones establish school zone speed limits, physical limits and times that the zones are in effect. The School Zones are located at Elementary, Middle, Junior, and High Schools in both Pearland, Pasadena, and Alvin Independent School Districts located within the City limits.
School Zones are established for the safety of pedestrian traffic to and from schools. A uniform approach to school area traffic controls assures the use of similar controls for similar situations, which promotes appropriate and uniform behavior on the part of motorists, pedestrians and bicycles, according to City officials.
Currently, Council plans to have a revision of the enforcement time for the majority of the schools within the Pearland, Pasadena, and Alvin Independent School Districts to span approximately 45 minutes around both the morning and afternoon bell. In addition, a revision of seven (7) school zones is also part of the new school year.
The goal of these changes is to improve driver awareness, and ease of enforcement within the school zone, improving the safety of pedestrians and students.
Enforcement Times were updated to reflect the school bell times as changed by the Districts. Some of the school zone enforcement start or end times were adjusted by 5 minutes in order to establish more reasonable enforcement windows.