Update on parking construction

Lasirra Hines, Entertainment Editor

Since the previous news about the construction for the new parking lots and south side project, many changes have occurred. 

The Sunset lot has had more of the ground lifted, resulting in very little space in a lot. Administration secured 10 to 15 spots of parking for students.

“We did fight to maintain a small number of spots, 10 to 15 spots, remaining on the Sunset lot,” principal Michael Dorst said. “We were asked to consider making those non-student spots, just for staff and faculty, but right now I don’t see a reason to not allow students to continue to park there, if they desire to.”

The storm water drain project started up as well, between the Oak Street student lot and the South teacher lot. The plan is for that project to be done by the time students come back from winter break.

The East side expansion of Manhattan High School is another project that has been in the works. The previously mentioned Sunset lot has been affected by it, leaving those 10 to 15 spots. A tree that stood in the lot was uprooted due to the expansion plan. Many didn’t want the tree to have to be taken down.

“I was sad to see the tree have to go. I don’t think anybody wanted the tree to have to be removed,” Dorst said, “but unfortunately the expansion to accommodate for our growing population and combining the schools together required the building to be pushed out in that direction. It was unfortunate that had to happen for us to be able to expand out to the East side.”

While lots have been limited, there are few students can use. The Northwest student lot and the use of door 29 has been effective, letting students have access to the school without having to walk in construction zones.

“We’ve been happy with Door 29  and our security station to allow and secure access in and out for students so they don’t have to walk around in construction zones,” Dorst said.

The Oak Street lot is another lot that can be used, as well as the 10 to 15 slots in the Sunset lot. There also plans to be additional lots on the Northwest side, ensuring students can find a place to park.

Dorst has been very appreciative of everyone’s flexibility during the construction, the pandemic, and the hybrid schedule happening all at once. The hope is to have similar success during the East side expansion construction. 

“Being in the middle of a pandemic and being under construction, [as well as] being in the middle of different attendance schedules, I think everybody is handling the construction about as good as they could,” Dorst said. “I do appreciate everybody and how flexible they have all been all the way to the support that we’ve had and the support that we have had for years from our construction company. It’s gone as good as it possibly can, and I am hoping that we continue to have this similar success as we start to see the building come up.”