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Letter: Troy is not site for school

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opinion River Falls, 54022

River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

Dear Editor

The question whether Heartland Montessori School should be allowed to operate on Red Brick Road in Troy Township is not about its qualifications and service provided.

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The issue is: does a busy school fit in our quiet, rural neighborhood?

Answer: Absolutely not.

Jocelyn Richardt, Montessori treasurer, failed to mention what this business could do to our rural neighborhood:

  • Tripling traffic/ increasing risk to safety: Our narrow road has sharp curves, no shoulders. Children wait on the road for the bus. Cars pull over so busses can pass. People walk this road daily with children and pets.
  • Noise nuisance for neighbors with altered sleep patterns due to evening shifts: Morning traffic and slamming doors of nearly 40 cars, and children's "outside voices," will ruin the peace and quiet they thought they invested in here.
  • We are being used purely for business reasons. Montessori seeks cheaper property close to exclusive neighborhoods whose homeowners can afford its $5,700 tuition. Montessori representatives have tried to bully us with threats to turn the property into a half-way house.
  • Not one resident here benefits. Our homes are modest. We can't afford Montessori tuition. Traffic and noise would decrease property values and make it hard to sell our homes.
  • They claim to close at 3 p.m., neglecting to mention early drop-offs, late pick-ups and bimonthly potlucks requiring overflow parking for 54 cars beyond the 16-car eyesore of a commercial parking lot.
  • Opening day calls for 49 students and four teachers. Jocelyn admitted it would be a tight fit. Imagine cramming all that in a three-bedroom house. Even if they convert the garage to a classroom, the septic system is grossly inadequate. Montessori wants to increase to 75 students! Will they abandon the property after all that wear and tear? Who would buy a house without a garage? Should the BOA (St. Croix County Board of Adjustment) be allowed to open the door to commerce our neighborhood?
  • Businesses unoccupied when closed represent a nuisance. Last week's newspaper reported: "2,800 in equipment stolen from school." That's River Crest Elementary, the new school just north of here. The Town of Troy would need to contract for more law enforcement.

    Heartland Montessori should practice the values of community respect that it teaches. Seek an appropriate place to do business, a place with supportive infrastructure and where traffic and noise won't cause such hardships.

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