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City OKs amended CUP for Truman work

The Sunset Hills Board of Aldermen recently voted unanimously to grant the Lindbergh School District an amended conditional-use permit that will allow the district to proceed with plans to expand Truman Elementary School's library and construct a covered walkway.

The school also plans to add 39 parking spaces, a shelter addition, playground equipment and storm sewers.

Work should start June 1, Lindbergh Superintendent Jim Sandfort told the Call.

In granting the amended conditional-use permit last week, the board agreed that the changes would not increase hazards, adversely affect the character of the neighborhood or the general welfare of the community or overtax public utilities.

The school's campus at 12225 Eddie and Park Road is situated both in Crestwood and Sunset Hills. Crestwood did not require an amended conditional-use permit for the project.

The walkway will be built between the classroom and the athletic and cafeteria areas. Pupils currently have to go outside to get between the areas.

"There are so many students who travel between the buildings two and three times a day,'' Sandfort said. "We're going to enclose the walking area, which will make it safer for young people. They won't have to bundle, unbundle for 30 minutes and bundle up again.''

The library, which Sandfort calls the "heart of our literacy and research programs,'' will more than double in space. It is especially important at Truman, which has 777 pupils, and is the largest elementary school in the district.

"The library is simply too small to accommodate our programs,'' the superintendent said.

Lumber on the playground that contains toxins and has been encased in the past also will be removed as part of the construction.

Sandfort said district officials have met with parents and parent groups to discuss the improvements, which are being done as part of the school district's $14.1 million Proposition 4 bond issue that was approved by voters last April.

Sandfort said the walkway and library have been major concerns for years, but they weren't the district's top priority.

"Now, we're at a point where it's at the head of the agenda,'' he said.

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