Our Randolph taxpayers recently voted “no” twice on a proposition to purchase property and build a new bus garage, sending a strong message. As loud and clear as the message was, it leaves me wondering about our next step to remedy a problem with our current bus garage.
Our bus mechanics’ bays are not what they should be. They are too small and we need a better lift system within the bays. I have been working with the architect to reevaluate plans from phases two and four of our long term renovations at Randolph which included additions to the current bus garage.
It makes sense to me to add on to our current garage and/or renovate the current bus mechanics’ bays to better service our buses and to give our hard working mechanics the space they need. Buses are quite a bit bigger than they were when this garage was built so the space and a better lift system are definitely needed. The Department of Transportation won’t even inspect our buses here any longer.
Here’s the question for me. While I’m confident that the addition/renovation is the right thing to do, I’m unclear what the public sentiment is on this project. I wasn’t here for the last vote, so I’m not sure why the public opposed the project. I don’t know if it was the land purchase, the idea of building a whole new garage when people think the one we have should suffice, or the idea of more projects in general. With the Technology Center going up now, maybe voters are just thinking “enough already.”
Believe me, as a new superintendent in the midst of a capital project and a number of other big issues to tackle, the last thing I want to take on is a new building project. However, I can’t in good conscience delay this construction, it’s necessary to maintain our assets and to help our employees work more effectively.
I’d love to hear public opinion, here, on Randolph Writes. In addition, here’s a survey asking our Randolph taxpayers for some feedback/opinion/ideas so that we can consider Randolph viewpoints in our decision making process. Please take the survey and let me know what you’re thinking so that I can consider multiple viewpoints while making decisions in this job of leading our district.
If this works well, I’ll use the survey tool on our website to gain insight into your thinking in the future. Thank you!