A request from educators to expand the use of Forest Park’s newest education facility was denied Monday by a village council that expressed frustration with the district’s apparently lackadaisical effort to keep promises it made almost three years ago.
Commissioner Mark Hosty was the most vocal opponent at the June 25 council meeting to allowing District 209 Proviso High Schools to bring in educators and students from nearby Triton College to use the new Proviso Math and Science Academy on Roosevelt Road. Since granting variances to the zoning code in 2004 so that the magnet school could be constructed, Hosty said the school has failed to make good on several promises it made to win that original approval.
“Do the things they were supposed to do before coming back here to ask us for a second variance,” Hosty said in urging other commissioners not to approve the request.
According to supporting paperwork given to the council, the Proviso Township High School District has failed to submit a landscape plan to the public works director and the parking lot has not been constructed in accordance with the plans. Further, the district also has not submitted the proper paperwork to consolidate the property into a single parcel.
Commissioner Martin Tellalian questioned whether the rush to vote the request down was simply a knee jerk reaction in the hopes of sending a message to the petitioner. Tellalian was joined by Mayor Anthony Calderone in casting the minority votes in favor of allowing college classes to be taught at the school.