Block 24/CFSD Early Childhood Center 1/9/07 Update
Block 24/CFSD Early Childhood Development Center Update 2
January 9, 2007
On January 9, 2007, the LPHOA Governing Board met in Executive Session to discuss progress and issues regarding the CFSD Early Childhood Development Center. Details follow.
CFSD continues to clear land on what was commonly known as Block 24 which is the triangular 10 acre piece of land bounded by Skyline, Sunrise and Campo Abierto and the new home of the Early Childhood Development Center.
CFSD owns the land and plans to build a 12,000 sf. $3.9 million dollar childcare facility with money raised from the $18.8 million dollar bond issue passed on November 2, 2004. The bonds will be repaid through “ a levy of ad valorum property tax revenues” – aka part of your real estate property taxes – based on average annual secondary tax rate of 0.2622 per $100 of assessed value.
The bond money will pay for the construction of the facility. Once complete, It is not absolutely clear who will actually furnish and operate the facility as a for profit business. If anyone knows, I would appreciate hearing the details (Send a note to Dovesnest@opus1.com). The old Valley View Preschool (5281 Valley View Road, Tucson, AZ 85718 Phone: 520-577-5314) will migrate its’ existing operation to the new facility sometime later in 2007.
On December 29, 2006, County Administrator Chuck Huckleberry wrote to CFSD Superintendent Dr. Mary Kamerzell to inform CFSD to correct some previous public statements about access to the new child care facility.
According to documents supplied by CFSD, it claimed it had access at four points:
one on Sunrise, two on Skyline and one on Campo Abierto. Mr. Huckleberry’s letter advises that the Sunrise access “will not be allowed”. His letter does not address the 2nd access point on Skyline, and suggests the Campo Abierto is riddled with issues of safety along with the concerns of many residents and commercial owner parcels. He has asked CFSD to “provide the County with appropriate traffic engineering studies or reports indicating how traffic for the proposed center will be handled at both Campo Abierto and Skyline Drive.”
The LPHOA governing Board has spent considerable time studying this project and the impacts to residents and commercial members, as well as the safety issues for all. Today, it was resolved to hire a local engineering firm to study these issues.
The Board unanimously agreed that the existing, now open Skyline access point is the safest method of access to the new center. It is on a low utilization portion of Skyline Drive with easy ingress and egress. It is also the point the CFSD bargained for in the original condemnation case back in 1994 when the CFSD acquired the land. The Board also unanimously agreed that rather than use Campo Abierto for the convenience of users of the new childcare center, that the County reconsider its position on a traffic signal at the intersection of Sunrise and Skyline as the safest and most cost effective solution to the access question. Back in the late 90’s some of you may recall a major disagreement with the County about the placement of the traffic signal now at Campo Abierto vs. an alternate site of Skyline/Sunrise. At that time, The MDA had actually offered to pay for the signal. It is not clear if that option still exists today.
It should be noted that the majority of the wall along the west side of Campo Abierto approaching the West Gate is located on CFSD property. Additionally about 700’ of the walking path to the North of the West Gate is also on CFSD property. The implications of this are simple: We could lose the walking path and the wall, which would be a shame.
You might be asking yourself, “that has been here as long as I have and isn’t there some issue of eminent domain?” (Meaning we have used it unopposed for so long, we have now taken ownership of it). Unfortunately, this point of law does not apply to State owned property, of which CFSD is a part.
As a concerned member of the LPPOA, you can help and here’s how:
Contact your local County Supervisor Ann Day. It is VERY important for Supervisor Day to hear from as many of you as possible. You are her constituents. You can reach Ms. Day at the following address:
Supervisor Ann Day, District 1
Pima County Board of Supervisors
130 W. Congress, 11th Floor
Tucson, AZ 85701
Contact the County Administrator. You can reach Mr. Huckleberry at the following address:
Mr. C. H. Huckleberry
County Administrators Office
Pima County Governmental Center
130 W. Congress, Tucson, AZ 85701-8171
Contact the Catalina Foothills School District (CFSD):
Dr. Mary Kamerzell
Catalina Foothills School District
2101 East River Road
Tucson, AZ 85718