District trying to limit freeway construction impact on schools

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The Kyrene School District is doing what it can to keep students safe from the construction on the new Loop 202 extension. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Kyrene School District is doing what it can to keep students safe from the construction on the new Loop 202 extension. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
District staff has been preparing to deal with the distractions, dust and possible detours for a while now and they've been working with Connect 202 on a few key issues. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) District staff has been preparing to deal with the distractions, dust and possible detours for a while now and they've been working with Connect 202 on a few key issues. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Kyrene De Los Lagos Elementary is the closest with only a chain link fence separating the playground from the construction zone. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Kyrene De Los Lagos Elementary is the closest with only a chain link fence separating the playground from the construction zone. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Right now, detours aren't an issue. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Right now, detours aren't an issue. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
AHWATUKEE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The Kyrene School District is working hard to minimize the impact on students from the construction of the new Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway.

"For our district to have this magnitude of a road built this close to a school, this is the first time and it's not just this school, it's Akimel and Estrella," said the District Facilities and Transportation Director Eric Nethercutt.

Kyrene De Los Lagos Elementary is the closest with only a chain link fence separating the playground from the construction zone.

"Especially our younger kids are very curious and they like to be on the back fence looking through the chain link at what's going on on the construction," Nethercutt said.

District staff has been preparing to deal with the distractions, dust and possible detours for a while now and they've been working with Connect 202 on a few key issues.

[RELATED: Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway has its first new pavement]

"Minimizing the impact on instruction through either noise from construction equipment or through dust and dirt being kicked up during construction," said Nethercutt.

That includes asking that construction equipment not be stored directly behind the school.

Another way they're hoping to minimize distractions is the addition of another chain link fence with some screening material to block the activity.

"Prevent kids from hanging on the back fence and watching what's going on," Nethercutt said.

[RELATED: Construction on Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway starts]

They also have plans in place to deal with any possible detours that may be necessary over the coming months and years, although to this point that has not been an issue.

As the construction has progressed the district has held meetings for parents in order to address any of their concerns. In fact, another meeting is being planned for next week at Akimel Middle School.

"I'm sure they're doing everything they can. It's obvious there's going to be some imposition but as long as there's a balance and they do the best they can I guess that is all you can hope for," Marty Conboy said.

Anyone with concerns should contact the Connect 202 hotline at 1-855-763-5202.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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