At a January 14 meeting of the Kensington/Talmadge Planning Committee, committee members took an official stance on the proposed improvement project for Hoover High School. The committee unanimously agreed to write a letter in opposition to the project and send it to state representatives, school-board officials, city councilmembers, and the mayor. The members agreed the letter should be concise and list only the most severe impacts they expect the improvements will have on the community.
The most contentious part of the project is the plan to install 90-foot light towers around the football field. The committee and members of the audience said the night games would bring more crime, trash, noise, and light into their quiet neighborhood. They said the light towers don’t fit in with the character of the community.
During the meeting, several residents who live near the school complained about the potential impacts they would experience from night games.
“At the first meeting with the community, the principal stood up and said they would have 5 events every school year; the very next meeting, they started talking about 15 events. So, where’s it stop? When you think of 15 events, most likely there will be one per weekend, so that’s nearly a quarter of our weekends [annually] where we will be affected. You know, we would like some peace and quiet during our weekends.”
The noise created by a new woodshop building, the height of the bleachers for the baseball field, the widening of Highland Avenue, and the pedestrian entrance on Monroe Avenue were also cited as concerns.
Kensington residents in opposition of the improvements have another problem: the planning committee has no jurisdiction or influence on the project. One concerned resident spoke to that issue.
“We need your support for legal reasons. A lot of neighbors are talking about coming together and doing a mass lawsuit against the school district.”
For more information, go to bajatalmadge.org.