NewsDriving Tampa Bay Forward


Speeding near Tampa Heights Elementary has residents concerned

City of Tampa now working to ease concerns
Posted at 5:11 AM, Jan 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-26 08:24:56-05

TAMPA, FL - Residents in a Tampa neighborhood said speeding along their streets is becoming a growing issue.

Vania Walters moved to the Tampa Heights area in 2019. It's a neighborhood she felt welcomed to immediately, but there was one thing her neighbors were quick to point out.

"When I first moved on to the block everybody was very nice, very welcoming and the consistent factor was 'hey, when you're in the street be careful,'" Walters said.

For six months she has seen those words come to life.

"I have seen dead cats on the street. The neighbor across the street had her dog killed while on the leash because somebody jumped the curb," Walters said.

Her fear is a child could be next. Tampa Heights Elementary school is a block away.

She noticed the problem get worse when it reopened earlier this year.

"Since the school has been open I have noticed that people try to cut through because they don't want to get stuck in the school zone and I have seen people come through here what I think is like 60 miles per hour, "Walters said.

Erin Maloney with the Hillsborough County School District said a resource officer is present every morning and the principal, who is outside with the children in the morning, has not been made aware of complaints from parents.

A crossing guard is also present to ensure students' safety.

Mobility Department Director with the City of Tampa Vik Bhide said the city has not received any complaints, however, they have work planned in the area to address the concerns which include signage and additional traffic control devices if needed.

A timeline on when the work will begin has not been given.

As for Walters, she said while she may not have little ones she is still a member of the community and wants to make sure she's safe both in and outside her home.

"I do have a personal accountability of living here knowing that if I don't say something that I don't ever want to watch the news and see something happen to someone's child or just anybody walking," Walters said.