OCOEE, Fla. - A road construction project was causing traffic from parents dropping off their kids at Ocoee Elementary and Middle School to spill onto the mayor’s street—until “local traffic only” signs went up Thursday and police started handing out tickets.
Ocoee Mayor Rusty Johnson told Channel 9’s Jeff Deal he was behind the erection of the signs.
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“My neighbors asked me to,” he said.
Commuters say the mayor received special treatment at their expense, saying it took them an extra 15 minutes to drive around the block.
The closure of Bluford Avenue, the main access road to the schools, has frustrated drivers like Peggy Kline, who drops her granddaughters off at school every day.
“You’re frustrated it takes you forever. People on Maguire won’t let you out,” said Kline.
She had been using the cut-through street until the signs appeared Thursday.
Johnson said the measures were necessary for the neighborhood.
“It’s really bad and I can’t even pull out of my driveway,” Carole Amey, a neighbor, said.
But before school let out Friday, the road was cleared, the signs and barricades pushed off to the side of the road.
With the road open, WFTV observed some stretches with short lines of cars cutting through—but commuters felt it wasn’t enough to warrant closing the road.
“We have cut through other people’s neighborhoods and they didn’t have this stuff put up,” said Kline.
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