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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Pros and cons of various school building sites weighed

Friday, December 6, 2002

One of the issues that the Marshall School District Facility Committee has been wrestling with during the past several weeks has been to come up with a list of properties that they can recommend to the Marshall Board of Education as good potential sites for a new school building or buildings.

The committee has taken this task very seriously and they have spent tireless hours exploring a wide range of land possibilities scattered throughout the district.

Features of a good school site

There are many different factors that must be considered when trying to find a site for a new school. For instance, it is good to have a site that is within the city limits, or at least very close to the city. Sometimes it is difficult to find a large tract of ground in the center of the city. However, you don't want the site to be too far from the city itself.

Another key factor is to have good roadway access to a school site. It is advisable to have at least one and preferably two major roads that run adjacent to a school site. People need to be able to get there easily with more than one entrance and exist to the property.

It is also important for a school site to have necessary utility access such as water, gas, electricity, and sewer. Sometimes it can be very costly to run one or more utilities to a particular piece of property.

A good school site also needs to be large enough to not only have adequate space for the school buildings(s) but also have room for parking, outdoor play areas, room for driveways, etc. It can also be good to have enough land for future school development, if the district decides it wants to go that direction.

A good school site also needs to be relatively flat as well as relatively clear. The less dirt that has to be moved and the less brush that has to be cleared, the better.

Is there a perfect site?

One of the things that the facility site selection committee has done has been to develop a list of pros and cons for each potential school site.

In doing this, it becomes apparent that a perfect piece of property for a new school probably does not exist. There are positive and negatives on all of the different sites and the committee has been trying to weigh and evaluate those different factors.

The Facility Committee and the Marshall school board will have a difficult time in deciding on the best site for a new school and I'm sure that there will be those who will disagree with the property that is finally selected.

However, remember again that all sites will have some negatives and the goal of the committee, the board, and district personnel will have to work hard to overcome any negatives of the site selected and make the site work.