The Garland City Council held a public meeting on the sidewalk variance for the new Garland Elementary School during its city council meeting Wednesday. Box Elder School District Facility Management Director Jim Christensen described the sidewalk issue.
A few months ago, he said, the school district approached the city’s planning and zoning commission with a fence safety concern. A city ordinance would have required the school district to provide a sidewalk, due to the length of that side of property, which butts up against residential lots. Because of safe school policies that the district abides by, the north side of the sidewalk would need to be fenced, as well.
The school district noticed that if that side of the school was fenced and a sidewalk placed there, with residential fences on the other side of the sidewalk, it would become a trap that would not be safe for the students, he continued.
The concern was that the fences were too restrictive on both sides of the sidewalk. The council determined that only one entrance and exit over the distance of hundreds of feet was not acceptable. No citizens were against the proposal and after a commission vote, a variance was granted where no sidewalk will be required and the school will fence along the property line to the residents’ back yards.
The school plans Christensen presented also showed the placement of two 10-foot double gates onto the school property that he said for safety reasons would be locked during class time each day. The west gate would be the bus unloading and loading area, with a sidewalk leading to the back of the building and a north gate would be yet another access. The front entrance and parking area would be on the southeast corner.
The school will be the same floor plan as Perry’s Three-Mile Creek Elementary.
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