Cottonwood Park school site needed for new Silverthorne Elementary |

Cottonwood Park school site needed for new Silverthorne Elementary

This Wednesday, the Silverthorne Town Council will be asked to make a decision for the future of our children. Difficult choices and hard decisions are not new to council.

Our hope is a decision will be made to allow the Summit School District Board of Education to proceed with its plans to build a new elementary school. The board is asking council members to approve a land deal that is the critical initial step in moving forward with a desperately needed new elementary school.

A decision not to proceed will be extremely disappointing to us as parents and will have a devastating effect on some of our youngest residents.

The proposed site is located on Highway 9 near Hamilton Creek Road, referred to as Cottonwood Park.

In essence, the deal is a reconfiguration of the proposed development at the Cottonwood Park site. Six acres of land on the northern portion of the site were dedicated to the town for school purposes many years ago. After careful study of the Cottonwood Park site, the board determined that a location at the south of the property provides the best characteristics to build a school suited for learning. Accordingly, the board proposed the land swap.

The board’s proposed solution has been the subject of much criticism from the neighbors in the Hamilton Creek and the South Forty subdivisions.

The neighborly concerns range from safety of the children to dismay that neighborhood mailboxes may need to be moved from their present location. Some individuals have been open and honest that the real issue is the effect a school might have on the quality of life the residents enjoy.

Because we do not live in Hamilton Creek or the South Forty, we will not attempt to quantify the effects a school may have on these residents.

We do, however, have a vested interest in a new school. We have two preschool children. We are excited about the prospect of a new school and specifically the new school proposed at Cottonwood Park.

The board has taken active measures to work through safety issues associated with Highway 9. Parking at the new school will be nearly triple the parking at the present site.

Upon completion, the new school will integrate a community park and park facilities. A new facility will attract new teachers, a precious commodity deserving of good accommodation. Most importantly, a new school will have a positive effect on the quality of life for literally thousands of the smaller, less vocal residents in Summit County.

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