Imagine living in a subdivision where there is only one way in and one way out.
Now, because of road construction, once outside of the neighborhood, there is only one direction to go. That is the problem facing hundreds of people in a northwest side housing addition.
“There are over three hundred homes and we only have one entrance,” said Linda McNutt. “Now we’re down to half of an entrance. It doesn’t appear that it’s been well thought out for a community this size.”
Construction crews closed the intersection at Bass and Hadley roads through December to install a roundabout. However, the stretch of Bass Road just east of the Stratford Forest subdivision was already closed at Flaugh. The only way drivers can get in or out of Stratford Forest is by taking Yellow River Road.
Residents said it is not only inconvenient but it also poses a safety concern.
“Hadley is shut. All of Bass is shut. You tell me how any emergency vehicle is going to get in this addition,” said Tamara Hire.”What happens if someone has a heart attack? How long is it going to take for them to get to us? That’s what’s frustrating.”
“If we have a bad fire or this gets blocked off because of a wreck, [I’m concerned] we wouldn’t be able to get emergency vehicles in here,” said McNutt.
The Three Rivers Ambulance Authority (TRAA) responds to emergencies in the area. Rob Smith, Chief Operating Officer at TRAA, told Newschannel 15 that first responders do have a plan in place.
TRAA changes the way ambulances are positioned based on construction and driving patterns. It allows them to respond to emergencies faster. Smith said navigating housing additions with only one entrance is not uncommon.
Still, many people in the area plan to take their concerns up with the county officials.
“Hopefully a lot of other neighbors will too just to get the ball rolling,” said Hire.
McNutt said she has lived in the subdivision for nearly 14 years. She said there have been plans to build a second entrance with access to O’Day ever since she can remember.
The developer for this addition said the second entrance is scheduled to be complete by the end of August. It does little to ease the frustration of neighbors right now, though.
“I think they should have finished what they started before they started more,” said McNutt. “And had that open and that access ready for people to access the neighborhood
Hadley and Bass Road construction is planned through December.