The chronic parking shortage at RB High School isn’t news. The recent renovation of the school began with a plan to build a multi-level parking structure on neighboring land owned by the zoo. But the plan was abandoned for a number of reasons, including doubts about the legality of using school district funds to build a structure on land not owned by the school district.
Now we have a proposal to create more parking by paving over the tennis courts and the playing field behind them, and building new tennis courts in North Riverside, on land not owned by the school district.
If it’s legal to use school district money to build on land owned by the village of North Riverside, then it must be legal to use it to build on land owned by the zoo. If that’s the case, then all efforts should be directed to that solution. There are too many problems with moving the tennis courts, including the loss of a popular neighborhood playing field, the neighbors’ loss of the use of the courts, and the future traffic headaches for the residents of Hollywood and Rockefeller avenues.
We also have to consider the mechanics, the additional costs and the risks involved in busing the tennis players back and forth on a daily basis to North Riverside. Leaving the tennis courts where they are eliminates all of those concerns.
Besides, aesthetics matter. It’s just wrong to slap the residents in the face by reducing a nicely landscaped neighborhood to the charm level of a Costco parking lot
Terence M. Heuel