City of Waco eyes safety improvements at Cameron Park

Cameron Park
Posted at 6:03 PM, Jan 10, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-11 11:16:27-05

WACO, Texas — Drivers speeding near Cameron Park in Waco are raising concerns.

What used to be a rhinoceros statue is now destroyed. The $30,000 sculpture was hit Saturday morning as Waco police attempted to make a traffic stop. The driver took the corner on University Parks Drive too fast, blasting into and destroying the statue.

That has increased concerns for people who frequent Cameron Park.

“That’s a little bit scary if you think about it because you know a lot of kids are here and their family pets and stuff like that, so it does concern you,” Waco resident Pablo Duarte said.

Flashing speed limit signs indicate what speed you should be traveling.

Jonathan Cook, Waco’s Parks & Recreation director, says this type of destruction can be avoided if people obey the speed limit.

The rhinoceros statue is the second animal statue in Cameron Park to be damaged due to high-speed drivers within the last year. A pedestrian bridge was also hit, causing a total rebuild.

“The one by the pedestrian footbridge that was hit, we came in with limestone blocks to create an extra barrier, when you have pedestrians walking through and that’s something we might explore in this area,” Cook said.

Those are safety improvements welcomed by some residents. Other residents, however, need more explanation.

“It will help," Duarte said. "It gives you more peace of mind knowing that there’s more safety measures placed around the park."

"The main concern is public safety," Waco resident Francisco Tamez said, “but since the incidents occur primarily in the late evenings, you know no one is around. Although it sounds like a good idea, I don’t know if it would be cost effective.”

For now, City of Waco officials say they will evaluate what will be the best method to deter fast driving through Cameron Park.