Claremont Road School Construction Irks Neighbors

Marion Avenue resident Kim Winter talks to the Board of Education about issues with construction workers at Claremont Road School site.

Construction workers at the Claremont Road School site are ruffling the feathers of some of their neighbors.

Two Marion Avenue residents appeared at the July 27 Board of Education meeting to ask the board members’ help with some issues with the workers.

The residents were introduced by Lakeside Avenue resident Daryl Kipnis, an attorney who is challenging state Sen. Robert Smith (D-17) in the November election.

Among the residents’ grievances, Kipnis said, was that one worker “did not make use the facilities and chose to do so in a very improper manner.”

“When some of these issues were brought to the board’s attention, they stopped,” he said, but they later resumed.

Marion Avenue resident Kim Winter told the board that some workers park their personal vehicles on the street “because they don’t want to get their tires dirty.”

“Also, today, there were three dump trucks with trailers attached to them parked in front of my yard.”

The trucks, she said, could make it difficult for emergency vehicles to pass if needed.

“It’s awesome that the school is here but my quality of life has been diminished because of it,” she said. “I wish someone could contact the companies who are there and tell them to be mindful of the people who live there. I don’t want to come home and have a trailer parked in front of my house. I take care of my house, I would like to keep it that way.”

Winter’s neighbor, Linda Breunig, said that she can’t get her dog to go outside to go to the bathroom because of the noise from the construction work.

“I can’t go into my pool because I could have 30 construction men looking into my backyard,” she said. “There’s no privacy on our street.”

“We have to put cones into our driveway to prevent cars from turning around in our driveway,” she said. “I want you all to know, every time you look at that school, how much that school has impacted our life, and it’s not for the good.”

The two also complained about the work starting at 7 a.m.

“This is very concerning,” board president Ed Potosnak said. “Thank you for coming out and sharing that.”

Schools Superintendent John Ravally said the district would contact its construction manager to remind the workers that “the road should not be used as a private parking area, that they should be parking on-site.”

Ravally said union construction workers generally do start between 7 and 7:30 a.m., but “as far as those other inconveniences, we can instruct them to be more conscientious about the neighbors.”

Ravally said if the neighbors continue to have issues, to contact him.

“We want to be good neighbors, that’s our goal,” he said. “We want to work with the neighbors, not against them.”

“It is really important to us to get along well with the neighbors,” Potosnak said. “The construction will pass within a year or so. We invested another $35,000 in vegetation at the request of your neighbors. We’re trying to do the best we can.”

The Claremont Road School is slated to be open for the 2018-19 school year.


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