Westport Planning and Zoning proposal to move longtime beloved community garden
The Westport Planning and Zoning held a special meeting over a new elementary school proposal that would move a beloved community garden.
The meeting began at 7 p.m. on Monday and was livestreamed on the town's website.
First Selectwoman Jenn Tooker said it's not a perfect plan, but a good plan for a step in the right direction.
“I am now requesting that you issue a positive report for the following modified plan that represents a compromise,” Tooker said.
In December, the building committee of Long Lots School approved a proposal for a new elementary school. The proposal includes the replacement of the garden with a new multi-purpose field.
A backup plan would place the garden behind the school.
Since then, there have been multiple meetings between the committee and First Selectwoman Jenn Tooker.
At Monday night's meeting, Tooker outlined modified improvements to the December proposal. Those include a new and relocated Long Lots elementary school, a multi-purpose field whose size is to be determined, and a replaced and relocated community garden, whose size is also to be determined.
“We will keep the current school operational and safe during construction but that means closing the site to all activity except the school,” she said.
Tooker plans to place the community garden next to the multi-purpose field, but she says further engineering reports and site studies will be required.
“Please note there is no change to the three current uses of the property. A school, fields and a community garden,” Tooker said.
Westport’s Veronica Tysseland and Sarah Morrison started the grassroots campaign "Parents for a New Long Lots School".
“We’re feeling pretty good because we’re feeling the compromise that’s been offered houses a school, gardens,” Morrison said. “Everybody might lose a little here or there, but it feels like a great compromise for the entire community.”
Tysseland and Morrison hope construction on the new school can begin before the end of 2024.
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