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New subdivisions near local schools cause traffic concerns

Officials with the City of Rogers say it requires new developments to have connectivity.

ROGERS, Ark. — Subdivisions seem to be going up all across Northwest Arkansas and with more homes, comes more traffic.  

The developers of Soaring at Scissortail are wanting to build on five acres with 28 lots just across the street from Evening Star Elementary School on West Pleasant Grove Road in Rogers. 

The company went in front of the Rogers Planning Commission to ask for several waivers, one that would’ve limited the connection between their planned subdivision and the one that will be built north, but they were denied this waiver to the connectivity ordinance.  

“Parents like to sit off-site to the school and wait for their children to come out and cross over and we just think they’ll be awaiting problem in our neighborhood, and no one wants to live in a neighborhood where cars are waiting for their kids to come out every day,” developer Bob David said. 

Within walking distance of the school, you are in Rogers, Cave Springs and Bentonville, making things more complicated. 

David says this connection could be dangerous, causing more vehicles to come out onto the road. Less than a month ago, a Rogers Police community service officer was hit while directing traffic during school drop-off. 

“We designed a neighborhood knowing that there was a traffic problem there, and our solution in that design was to not to connect and we’d hoped that they would agree with us, but they didn’t, so now we have to back up and start over or just accept the connection and not worry about it,” David said. 

The City of Rogers says it requires connectivity through subdivisions to keep traffic flowing and not have traffic buildup like in front of schools. The city also says if it allowed gated communities to go up all over town, there would be connectivity issues everywhere. 

Public Relations Manager, Peter Masonis says the community development department met with police and the school to discuss the safety concerns on that stretch of West Pleasant Grove Road. 

“With the city limits being Bentonville, Cave Springs, even county all in that specific area and so the city of Rogers is committed to do everything that can legally be done and feasibly and practically be done to ensure the safety of the kids that are there,” Masonis said. 

One of the options the city is looking into is raising the road, which they say studies show slows the traffic flow. 

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