and reroofing the secondary campus. That $4.5 million comes from a bond that, despite questions and some discouragement from the public, was approved unanimously by the school board in March.
Richard Kresge, civil engineer with Quad 3, first spoke to the board about the parking variances the district sought. Under the zoning code, a new building of this type requires that additional parking spaces be created, 92 in all. The district asked to provide 51 spaces instead and, Kresge argued, this is adequate enough because the field house will be of use to already-existing sporting events, thus not generating any more traffic than usual.
The second part of the parking variance was for relief of the law that requires the parking lot be paved. The district plans to use a grassy area for overflow parking and it doesn’t want to pave it because, while games are not happening, that field is used for player practices.
Zoning Chair David Carl asked if additional lighting will be used for that overflow parking area and was told it wouldn’t. Later resident and school board candidate Barry Boone, who lives adjacent to the property, asked if any additional lighting would affect his home. Sam Scarantino, also from Quad 3, noted that several lights will be installed on the side of the field house building, as well as down the hill along the roadway. If contacted, he said, perhaps the district will turn off the lights during the night.
Boone and another resident also showed concern for stormwater runoff from the new facility but were told that matter will be addressed later by the township’s planning commission. Kresge did offer, however, that water will be pumped and drained away from nearby homes and that, if anything, stormwater runoff will be reduced after the field house’s new drainage system is installed.
After the parking variances were granted, the final zoning permit was for a special exception. As far as the field house being built in a residential-zoned area, Kresge said, it will not affect or change the neighborhood. The entire school lies in a residential zone, grandfathered in as it was built before the zoning code was written. The board unanimously agreed, related that the field house is simply an enlargement of the existing campus and not of any detriment to the neighborhood.