[UPDATE] Sidewalks and Safety Improvements in Killearn Lakes

By: Mike Springer Email
By: Mike Springer Email

Tallahassee, FL -- February 24, 2012 --

Leon County held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday in Killearn Lakes to mark the completion of sidewalks and safety improvements to the area.

Nearly five miles of sidewalk construction and bike lanes were completed along Deer Lake West and Kinhega Drive to provide safer transportation options for walkers and bikers, in addition to connecting neighborhoods to Deerlake Middle and Killearn Lakes
Elementary schools.

“This project was essential to supporting the priority of safety for children and families of Killearn Lakes,” said County Commissioner Bryan Desloge, who represents District 4. “This was one of four projects that involved maintaining a family-friendly environment rich
with this community’s natural landscape that includes the beautiful canopied roads we’ve come to love here in Leon County.”

The sidewalk and safety improvements took 17 months to complete and came in approximately $265,000 under budget. The full project included additional crosswalks with signs, bike lanes, restriped driving lanes and more school-zone markers. Roads were also narrowed to reduce vehicle speed and enhance pedestrian safety. A unique under-the-sidewalk stormwater treatment system provided a significant cost savings to Leon County in the construction process. Additionally, the sidewalk was constructed around trees, which significantly reduced the number of trees that needed to be removed.
Wetlands were also preserved in keeping with the overall character of the subdivision.

“This sidewalk will serve as a vital connector for kids to their schools, walkers and bikers to the great outdoors here in Killearn Lakes and neighbors to each other,” said County Administrator Vincent S. Long.

Area schools were considered well in advance allowing construction teams to lay the sidewalk during summer months when student populations would not be affected as much.

“This project is a great example of the County working hand-in-hand with the community to create something that is practical and enjoyable,” said Commission Chairman Akin Akinyemi. “The positive outcome is a more livable community – one that provides safe
and convenient transportation choices and recreational options to all citizens, especially our young ones, like the ones that use this area.”


Tallahassee, FL -- February 22, 2012 --

Parents and students at Deer Lake Middle School have been concerned about cars speeding along the roadways they crossed for years.

"They're coming really fast. And if I was on the street I was scared of the cars and getting hit," says eighth grader John Mitchell.
And getting hit is something on the minds of many parents whose children walked to school.

"You worry every morning you had to leave them and couldn't drop them off yourself," says Trina Searcy, parent of former Deer Lake students.

Now after 18 months and $1.5 million dollars the county is doing something about it.

At a ribbon cutting Wednesday, county officials unveiled improvements to Deer Lake West. Adding higher curbs, bike lanes and more crosswalks to a road that averaged about 6 accidents a year from 2005 to 2010. County Commissioner Bryan Desloge hopes these improvements give residents a peace of mind.

"We put the bike lanes in and we've re-stripped the road and we've defined the lanes. I think what's happening is that traffic studies will show the traffic will slow down a little bit," says Desloge.

And it seems to be working.
"I feel a great sense of relief," says Mitchell.

The project came in around $260,000 under budget. The total cost was $1,500,890.81.

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  • by Anonymous on Feb 24, 2012 at 10:23 AM
    Why don't they improve sidewalks and bike trails in neighborhoods where middle- to low-income people live? Last time I checked, Killearn Lakes was comprised of wealthier individuals. Guess it doesn't matter if you're trying to ride your bike to work out of necessity versus a leisurely ride during the day because you're a rich trophy wife with nothing better to do.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Feb 24, 2012 at 01:27 PM in reply to Anonymous
      because they pay a ton in property taxes
    • reply
      by Joe on Feb 24, 2012 at 01:33 PM in reply to Anonymous
      Your a idiot.
  • by MJ Location: Crawfordville on Feb 24, 2012 at 06:20 AM
    My son & his family live in this neighborhood. I applaud the efforts made to build sidewalks etc. here. I think it's a great thing! Congratulations on coming in under budget! Unfortunately the the littering is everywhere, we get it in our neighborhood too. Trashy people just don't have any sense at all. Too bad there wasn't a "red light camera" to catch all of them!
    • reply
      by alice on Feb 24, 2012 at 08:29 AM in reply to MJ
      so sad that your son family lives where there are sidewalks poor babies get a life lady you could have followed them
  • by anonamuze on Feb 23, 2012 at 06:10 AM
    Can someone find out who the jogger in this video is and give them a ticket for not using the sidewalk as Florida law says you are to do so?
  • by Clint Location: Killearn Lakes on Feb 23, 2012 at 05:58 AM
    Now, if we can just get the rednecks/hillbillies to quit playing those worthless, obnoxious subwoofers and throwing trash and beer cans out the truck/SUV window, we'll be a lot better off. It's a shame these lowlifes have trashed what was once a beautiful neighborhood.
  • by another local driver on Feb 23, 2012 at 04:35 AM
    Oh Yeah....the new costruction is just spiffy and helped so much. At least the kods have the common sense to walk well off the road or on the sidewalk. Now we get the packs of cyclists that don't understand single file, drivers that still race down a two foot narrower drive lane,and joggers in the bike lane instead of on the new sidewalk. Less driving room, no enforcement, too much speed, and NO COMMON SENSE. Yep, just wonderful.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Feb 23, 2012 at 06:16 AM in reply to another local driver
      I work in this neighborhood almost everyday. I have the task of picking up litter and mowing. I have found more liquor bottles in Killearn Lakes than anywhere I have ever worked performing the same duties.I would have been happy to see a pedestrian/ bicycle lane installed in the "GREEN" area that extends the entire length of Deerlake and Kinhega. Bicycles and cars do not mix! I advocate cycling, but I have a keen sense of reality...bicycles and cars do not mix.....If you ride a bicycle in the same roadway as motorists you need to have your head examined,I have seen too many "children" texting and driving to risk my life on a bicycle. You do have the right to ride your bicycle in the road with these idiots but are you smart enough not to????
      • reply
        by about those liquor bottles... on Feb 24, 2012 at 06:23 AM in reply to
        Does it seem that "they" congregate in the ditches right before the entrance into different neighborhoods? That's the way it is here in the 32317....I'm not going to name the neighborhood but I believe the entire neighborhood is loaded up with drunks and drunk drivers. They throw their bottles and beer cans in our ditch before turning into their pristeen neighborhood. I just pick it up and pray for KARMA...
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Feb 24, 2012 at 06:35 AM in reply to another local driver
      Law allows 2 bikes to rise next to each other.
  • by Pain on Feb 22, 2012 at 02:27 PM
    IT will be only a matter of time before a bicyclist will get hit and killed by a motorist. The Bike lanes is a unnecessary lane in the road. Why did the county waste taxpayer money on the bike lanes?????
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Feb 24, 2012 at 04:03 PM in reply to Pain
      You would rather share the road with cyclists with them in the travel lane so you would have no choice at all except to change lanes to pass?
  • by Local Driver on Feb 22, 2012 at 01:33 PM
    I find it quite funny how many parents and neighbors near that school are the reckless drivers themselves. Also, many students and parents don't use the new crosswalks, or use the bike lanes and sidewalks correctly. One side goes against traffic, one away. I see bikers on the sidewalks and walkers in the bike lane. Come on Deer Lake neighbors!
    • reply
      by another local driver on Feb 23, 2012 at 09:50 AM in reply to Local Driver
      I have almost been hit several times pulling out onto Kinega from Briarcreek on the blind corner. Kids late to school and parents racing to work get a running start on the corner beteen Deeklake and Kinega, by the time they reach Briarcreek they're up to 45mph before they ultimately get slowed by other traffic. I'd love to see LSO running radar at that intersect and pulling them over further down on Kinega. BIG Money - Excellent Revenue generator - May even save a life or two.
    • reply
      by Driver on Feb 24, 2012 at 08:12 AM in reply to Local Driver
      No one ignores school zone speed limits as much as those rushing to pick-up/drop-off their kids.
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