Archive for Thursday, July 19, 2007

New school location well chosen

July 19, 2007

Faced with a decision on where to locate a new elementary for first through fifth grades in a community growing in three different directions, the USD 491 Board of Education chose a site in the northeast section of Eudora.

In a sense, the district's decision couldn't be entirely right or wrong once it learned district patrons did not want two schools for those ages because of concerns that would serve to divide the community because growth is certain to continue to the south and likely to head west.

But it is equally true a new school located at the chosen site sits amid a very vibrant new neighborhood that has sprung up in the past decade and ripe for further development with the creation of the tax increment financing district in northeast Eudora.

As Superintendent Marty Kobza said at a visit to The Eudora News earlier this month, placing a new 1,000-student elementary school on the south district campus would have made the traffic situation on Church Street impossible twice a day.

Also significant is the fact the district won't have to spend a huge sum of money to bring water, sewer and electrical lines to the chosen site because of its proximity to existing infrastructure.

It also should be acknowledged the school grounds will provide green and recreational space lacking for residents of those new neighborhoods.

All this argues the school site was well chosen to serve the community's immediate needs but also well placed to address the demands of a growing community.

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