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Hillsborough Co. to add new sidewalk to help Riverview middle schoolers get to school safely

Rodgers Middle School parents have complained about the "unsafe" path to school
Rodgers Middle School crosswalk2.png
Rodgers Middle School crosswalk3.png
Posted at 8:21 AM, Oct 14, 2021

RIVERVIEW, Fla. — Hannah Glynn’s bike ride to school can be dangerous sometimes.

Past experiences have taught her she must stay alert as she crosses McMullen Road in Riverview to Rodgers Middle School.

“I almost got hit, but they were on their phone and all," Glynn recalled. “You have to watch (for) cars and stuff...if you’re going to need to cross the road."

Rodgers Middle School crosswalk.png

Luckily for Glynn and the other middle schoolers who bike or walk to school, there is a sidewalk on the east side of McMullen that takes students to the school's entrance.

As ABC Action News has previously reported, complaints by parents spurred Hillsborough County to add the half-mile stretch of sidewalk and a crosswalk at McMullen's intersection with Tucker Road in recent years.

“It definitely is an amazing improvement," said Glynn.

But getting to school remains a problem for some because there isn't a sidewalk on the west side of McMullen, where new neighborhoods have been built in proximity to the school.

“We’ve got new neighborhoods to the north and also to the south, and so new neighborhoods mean new kids," said Bianca Hatten, a Community Relations Coordinator with the county's Public Works department.

Now, Hillsborough County is pushing forward with its third round of improvements for the crossing.

After getting this community’s feedback in a survey last month, Hatten said the county is ready to move forward with building 5,500 new feet of sidewalk — a $1.2 million project — to connect the nearby neighborhoods and the students who live in them to the existing crosswalk and sidewalk.

“This is about the safety of the kids," Hatten said. "We want to make sure that these children can cross this heavily trafficked road for school.”

She said the improvements should be complete by the middle of 2022.

Students like Glynn can hardly wait for a trip to school that’s safer.

“It will be very, very helpful. I think that it will help lots of kids who live in the other neighborhoods, so they don’t have to be so dangerous and cross the road," she said.

Hatten, meanwhile, hopes parents across the county will keep reaching out when they notice a problem.