SANDOWN — Surplus money from the current district budget will be used to remove the sidewalk and repave the driveway at Sandown North Elementary School.
The Timberlane Regional School Board approved using $85,000 in surplus funds for the work, which will address safety concerns at the school.
“Probably the most slip and falls of any of our schools have been up at Sandown North,” said district facilities manager Jim Hughes.
The granite curbing for the sidewalk has deteriorated over the years, creating a tripping hazard for those at the school, according to Hughes.
The work will consist of tearing up the sidewalk as well as repaving the school driveway and parking lot. The sidewalk will then be even with the driveway and delineated with paint, rather than a curb, according to Hughes.
School Board Chair Nancy Steenson said the safety issue with the sidewalk has been a recurring theme during her four years on the board’s safety committee. She said every year has seen insurance claims from people tripping and falling in front of the school.
“It’s not a potential safety hazard, it is and has been a real safety hazard,” said Steenson.
Although the planned work extends beyond the pavement near the sidewalk, Hughes said the driveway has been in poor shape for years and it makes sense to do the entire project at once.
School Board member Donna Green asked if it would be possible to price the sidewalk work separately from the entire paving project.
“It’s not worth it,” Hughes said. “You’ll already have the equipment mobilized there. It’s better to do it right the first time.”