Best locations to learn how to drive

By Alexandra Sprouls ’19

One of the things that makes sophomore year so memorable is that many students turn 16 and obtain their permits After doing so, a parent is not only in charge of  taking them on 40 hours worth of drives but must trust their child to be safe behind the wheel.

There are many locations where parents can take their children to learn how to drive around Westport, so the big question is which one to choose. Sherwood Island State Park, Staples High School and Compo Beach are some popular places to learn as a beginner.

 

Sherwood Island State Park

Sherwood Island, especially during the winter, provides a usually unoccupied expanse of pavement filled with many parking lots and roadways. It features some wide streets seemingly made for beginning drivers, along with some narrow paths that connect parking lots. It also has many different sized turns to practice the hand over hand technique. “Driving around all the streets and parking lots around Sherwood Island many times led to me, and my parents, feeling comfortable with my driving abilities,” Annie Amacker ’18 said.

 

Staples High School

Staples High School is easily navigable as students already know their way around all of the parking lots surrounding the school. Its wide roads and easily interpreted signs contribute to its common usage by Staples student drivers. Practicing on weekends or during the summertime is ideal due to the lack of school events. “Staples was a great place to learn [to drive] because I knew I was going to be driving almost daily as an upperclassman, and it helped me get used to the many parking lots available there,” Ashley Constantino ’17 said.

 

Compo Beach

Compo Beach is a familiar location to many Westporters with easily drivable parking lots that are usually vacant during the winter. After getting comfortable behind the wheel, there are calm roads surrounding the beach like Compo Beach Road, Soundview Drive and various side streets stemming off of them. The speed limit is 15 mph in the beach area which is slower than the 25 mph speed limit found around most of Westport “The streets around Compo really helped me grow comfortable driving before I hit the main streets where the speed limit was much faster,” Jared Wainshal ’19 said.