Pine Hills residents urge Orange County leaders to make improvements for safe roads

Community members addressed Orange County officials about their traffic concerns at a meeting Wednesday night.

Pine Hills residents said they have had enough with reckless drivers in their neighborhood and set up a meeting Wednesday evening to urge Orange County Officials to take action before more people are hurt — or even killed.

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Pine Hills residents said they have had enough with reckless drivers in their neighborhood and set up a meeting Wednesday evening to urge Orange County Officials to take action before more people are hurt — or even killed.

Rosemarie Diehl, president of the Robinswood Community Improvement Association, said traffic on the roads in the Pine Hills area has gotten progressively worse.

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Wednesday evening, she led the community meeting to address traffic concerns.

“Pretty much everyone in the neighborhood, they’re very tired. They’re fed up,” she said.

Jae Fortune, founder of Pine Hills Talk, called the situation a public health crisis.

“I had a young kid that was my neighbor that lived on this street who was just trying to make his way into traffic during rush hour and got t-boned and almost lost his life. So this is a crisis. This isn’t a couple drivers being in considerate,” he said.

He and other residents are asking Orange County leaders to address the issues before others are hurt.

A representative for the Orange County Sheriff’s Office listened to the complaints and said they will work to keep the community safe for residents.

“We will improve on having patrol units out there observing and stopping people for traffic infractions,” the representative said.

County engineers and a representative for District 6 Commissioner Victoria Siplin were also present to answer questions.

News 6 reporter Treasure Roberts asked Orange County Chief Engineer Masood Mirza about a timeline for the projects.

“They are in the works right now. I think they already started digging the ground,” Mirza said. “You should see construction within a couple weeks.”

County engineers said they plan to add pavement speed markings, curb ramps and speed radar signs.

Dr. Latanya Nichols said Wednesday night’s conversation was a start.

“There [are] lots of concerns about traffic in the area, the number of concerns, the number of deaths, etcetera,” Nichols said. “So this is something we definitely need in our community.”

Dr. Nichols said they will not back down even if their needs aren’t met right away.

Diehl agreed and said they plan to compile a long list of questions that have still gone unanswered.

“We want to be able to feel safe and not have to worry about someone cutting through our community, creating havoc,” Diehl said.

Orange County engineers mentioned one reason it has taken a while to construct speed radar signs in the area is because they are on back order and have been for months.

Mirza said residents can expect to see some projects completed before the school year begins.


About the Author:

Treasure joined News 6 at the start of 2021, coming to the Sunshine State from Michigan.