September 3 editorial |

September 3 editorial

Park City High School remodel has been a long journey

A few toddler-sized trees have been planted around Park City High School’s new entryway and they couldn’t be a more welcome sight. After four years of demolition and construction, the school’s new look has finally emerged from behind piles of rubble, backhoes and cranes.

And it is stunning.

The façade, with its steel trestle-like welcome mat, handsomely echoes the town’s mining past and yet its carefully designed energy-conserving features, like the solar panels on the east-facing roof, speak to the future.

For most residents the construction project has been, at worst, a mild annoyance and, at best, an interesting process to watch unfold. But we know it has been a huge hassle for the students, teachers and administrators who had to carry on with classes despite the noise, dust and ever-changing footprint.

Hundreds of students trudged to outdoor portable classrooms in ferocious winter weather; hundreds more had to hike from far-flung parking areas. Some classrooms were hot, some were cold, as plumbers and electricians tried to work around the students. And when the jackhammers were running, iPods were used more for survival than entertainment.

But the classes of 2009 and beyond will benefit greatly from the additional classrooms and technical upgrades.

Unfortunately, the Park City School District won’t have long to rest on its laurels. Board members are already looking for a site for a future high school campus. And given the length of time it takes to plan, design, fund and build a high school, they are to be commended for starting now. The school board is scheduled to meet with Summit County officials this month to look at potential sites. Properties at Bear Hollow and Silver Creek have been mentioned as possibilities.

In 2004 a group of regular citizens serving on the board of education took a giant leap of faith and voted to go forward with a major remodeling of the existing high school. Over the last few years, they and their successors have taken some heat about the inconveniences the project has caused. We are glad they had the vision and courage to move forward and we support the current board in its effort to keep the ball rolling.

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