LATHROP – Drivers along Mossdale Road are about to get an unexpected surprise.
By next month signage should be up that will point out that parking and stopping along the entire stretch of the road that runs through Lathrop’s city limits will no longer be legal. The idea came before the City Council Monday night after business owners raised concerns. Vehicles parking in dirt lots along the road are creating an unsafe environment for truck drivers and motorists, according to the city’s staff report.
The cost of installing the 10 “No Parking” signs along Mossdale Road will cost Lathrop roughly $2,000 up front, but will be reimbursed by business owners along the street that lobbied the city for the change.
For the last several months the council has been discussing making it illegal to park along various stretches of roadway throughout the community. Heavy truck parking areas in the industrial section of town along I-5 have been targeted, as have sections of road that border along busy thruways – not unlike Mossdale Road.
But the proposal to create a “No Parking” zone along Thomsen Road adjacent to Lathrop Elementary School raised a red flag with several council members.
While the city has received complaints about vehicles dropping children off in the dirt areas adjacent to the recently paved sections, Mayor Joseph “Chaka” Santos is worried that the area itself provides a natural environment for child snatchers and pedophiles that have the cover of trees along the entire stretch.
Councilman Omar Ornelas agreed with the Mayor, and called up Lathrop Police Services Chief Eric Holman to get his take on the situation – learning that the police haven’t yet received any information on that specific spot but being assured that the “safety of the children is their top priority.”
Santos suggested the possibility of installing boulders or other devices that would keep cars away from the fence area and help solve the problem, and the council as a whole agreed to pull the Thomsen Road section from the agenda until the next meeting when staff could come back with recommendations on what can be done to remedy the situation.
“I’m all about children and I want to make sure that they’re safe and in a safe environment,” Santos said. “If that were blocked off I think that it would provide a much better situation for parents who are dropping their kids off – they’d know they were safe.”