Extract from Village Life November 9 - 15, 2005


BLAC concerned about proposed school

By Karen Billing, Staff writer

The Bass Lake Action Committee (BLAC) has recently voiced their concerns over a proposed elementary school that would take up land on the 41 acres already reserved for the proposed Bass Lake Regional Park. Fourteen acres would be sold to the Rescue Union School District to build a new school for 600 students.

BLAC addressed the school district at their October meeting, expressing their worries with the new school and letting them know they wanted their group and the public at large to be kept informed with the progress.

"We haven't taken a real stand because we're waiting to see exactly what the real concerns are about a school over there," said Kathy Prevost, BLAC president.

The proposed school will sit between the lake and the road with fields on one side and parking on the other. The regional park will be located closer to the greenspan, with an entrance on Silver Springs Road. The county authorized negotiations to sell the property in a meeting held in May.

The Rescue Union School District acknowledged in September that they were considering the land for a school.

The Bass Lake Action Committee is a non-profit group formed in 2003 by a group of concerned homeowners from the communities adjoining the proposed Bass Lake Regional Park. The group is made up of representatives from the residents of Sierra Crossing, The Hills of El Dorado, Woodleigh Lane, Woodridge, Bridlewood Canyon and Green Springs Ranch, those will be most impacted by the design of the park. The group wants to participate in the shaping of the park and ensure improvement of Bass Lake Road.

The proposed school has received a mixed reception; some people are glad to have a school nearby, others see the school as a potential traffic nightmare. And of course it leaves some wondering what impact the school will have on the proposed park.

"That's the reason we exist, dealing with what is happening with the park property," said Prevost.

She said the situation has gotten the park people concerned because so much time and money has been spent on getting the thing built.

BLAC supports a park that will provide numerous uses to the community. She said that the area has no sidewalks, so there's no place for kids to ride their bikes through the neighborhood. Also sports fields are something always needed. They just hope that lights and noise will not affect neighbors in a negative way.

As someone who has been with this issue since 2003, she's been playing the waiting game on the Environmental Impact Report (two years ago it was "any day now"). Should the land be sold, a whole new EIR will have to be done because the impacts will be different if a school is going in. Prevost also still concerns about where the money is going to come from to maintain the park.

"Every year that this goes on the price tag keeps going up," said Prevost.

But with the park and the school, there's one thing most can agree on: Bass Lake Road has got to improve.

"You can't be dumping all those people on a two lane road," said Prevost.

Already, BLAC is pleased at the improvements that have taken place. The re-aligned section of Bass Lake has been completed with a complete bike path and the connection to Serrano Parkway is nearly complete.

"We're very happy to see it happening," said Prevost.

E-mail Karen at kbilling@villagelife.com.


Extracted/transcribed by Bass Lake Action Committee