Updated school designs presented at stealth meeting

I hate when this happens. An important meeting about a neighborhood school takes place, and neighbors aren't even told about it. No flyers dropped off in mailboxes, stapled to telephone poles, or posted on the fences surrounding the school. Borderline only found out about it after seeing the lame account in the News Tribune.

The school is Whittemore Elementary. Readers of this blog may remember Borderline's account of the June 2005 meeting at the school in which designs for the school's rebuilding were presented. A major complaint: how the design would impact traffic. It seems that no one in the city had done a proper traffic impact study.

The new plan takes traffic complaints into account, apparently. It's hard to tell because the News Tribune article by Carrie Simmons about the unpublicized meeting doesn't bother mentioning the reaction of the parents and neighbors who showed up at the meeting. It doesn't even say how many were there. Only "official" voices are quoted -- a school administrator and an architect. Are their opinions the only ones that matter?

The other important fact revealed at the meeting is the timeline. Based on the closing and building periods cited in the article, it looks like construction will start later this year, and won't be finished until early 2008. That's if everything goes to plan -- and, judging by what's happened with the Big Dig and Newton North timelines, public work projects around here seldom do.


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