Town council gave the green light last week to a plan to change parking on 20th Street in front of W.A. Day school.
The block will now have designated handicapped, school bus and public parking zones.
“That will open up more parking,” Town of Fort Macleod manager David Connauton said. “Right now they have no place to park in front of the school.”
The change was recommended by the Fort Macleod Traffic Safety Committee.
The committee was responding to concerns the lack of public parking is putting children at risk.
At present there is a 15-minute handicapped parking zone beginning at the corner of Fifth Avenue and 20th Street.
The rest of the block to the driveway of the school parking lot is reserved for school bus parking from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The plan approved by council keep the handicapped parking zone in place.
There will now be a 100-foot stretch designated for 24-hour school bus parking.
The remainder of the block to the driveway of the school parking lot will become a one-hour parking zone from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The drive to change the parking layout began when the traffic safety committee received a complaint from Livingstone Range School Division transportation director Dale Slade.
The complaint originally expressed by W.A. Day school principal Connie Dersch-Gunderson is that some parents picking up and dropping off their children are not being careful.
Community peace officer Werner Dressler explained to council that parents are stopping their vehicles in the middle of the street to drop off their children.
They are also parking for long periods of time in front of residence on 20th Street.
In some instances, parents are even parking in the wrong direction in front of the school.
In consultation with Slade, the traffic safety committee decided to recommend establishing a zone big enough to accommodate three school buses.
The school bus zone will be in effect 24 hours a day.
In addition, the committee is recommending a spot designated solely for handicapped parking, as well as a one-hour public parking space.
Dressler told council once the plan is approved signs will be erected and a one-month public education campaign will begin, followed by enforcement of the new zones.