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    New sidewalk improves safety for Rio Mesa High School students

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    Students at Rio Mesa High School (RMHS) can now walk safely to school with the completion of a new sidewalk in El Rio, located near Strickland Acres and along Central Avenue. The 8-foot-wide sidewalk, which was designed and overseen by the Ventura County Public Works Agency’s Transportation Department, will help to improve the safety for both students and faculty.

    “In the past, students had to walk on a narrow path between the edge of the road and a ditch, close to traffic,” said Mark Contreras, Principal of RMHS. “The improvements have been welcomed by students and faculty alike.” 

    A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled to celebrate the recent improvements on Thursday, Sept. 26 at 9 a.m. on the front lawn of Rio Mesa High School.  Ventura County Supervisor John Zaragoza and RMHS Principal Contreras will attend the ceremony.

    VCPWA’s Transportation Department project manager, Ariel Braza, was assisted by Julie Stuart in the design of the project, which involved many challenges due to the terrain, heavy traffic, and many buried pipelines. Funding for the new sidewalk and road widening came from federal as well as local taxes and was constructed by local contractor, Granite Construction. 

    “The completion of the half-mile-long sidewalk and road widening would assist in increasing the overall safety for RMHS students along the heavily traveled stretch of road that extends between Vineyard Avenue and RMHS,” said David Fleisch, Director of the VCPWA Transportation Department. “We hope that these improvements can put many of the students and faculty as well as the drivers at ease as they make their way to school each day.”

    The construction was completed on Aug. 29. In addition, the south side of Central Avenue, will be resurfaced and the road widened in October. 


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