Airport runway no place for school
Eyeing a perceived opportunity, Roaring Fork School District officials have set their sights on the Glenwood Springs Municipal Airport as the site of a future high school.
Glenwood Springs City Council members have asked an ad hoc committee to look at other possible uses for the city-owned airport property. School superintendent Fred Wall, a committee member, like the new high school idea enough to ask an architect to draft a site plan and present it to the school board.
Why the school district would want to abandon the ideal midtown location of Glenwood Springs High School to squeeze a campus down the length of a rural airport runway is beyond understanding.
The move would clog the Sunlight Bridge intersection and South Midland Avenue with hundreds of students who drive to school at least twice a day. And without the development of restaurants in the airport area, students would also drive back into town at lunchtime.
For traffic congestion and safety reasons alone, the school district should drop this goofy idea.
As the high school nears its maximum capacity, school district officials should plan to redevelop the current high school site. For maximum use, the district could move its administration offices to another location and build a classroom wing along Grand Avenue. It could also build a multi-story structure in place of the old middle school wing.
It would be unpleasant to hold school in a construction zone for a year or two, but school district officials need to look at the long-term implications of moving the school to a remote corner of the city. The present location is the best, and it offers room to grow.
– Heather McGregor, Managing Editor
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