FEATURED COMMENT – Keeping Stuart Wood as a school needs a strong lobby

Re: Stuart Wood needs to be recommissioned as a school

Mel, I agree 100 per cent with your editorial for the reasons you have stated, including many more.

The recent Downtown Planning Advisory Committee (DTAC) also identified the need for a future public elementary school in the downtown core. There were five expert planners involved from Vancouver, that suggested if we want higher density and attract young families to live downtown, we will need to have a new elementary school in the downtown core.

A possible new school site was identified near 7th ave./Nicola & Battle, but a brief research shows it could cost taxpayers $20-30 million to build a new elementary school downtown. With the Stuart Wood site, we have been told it would cost maximum $5 million to upgrade Stuart Wood to a safer and more functional elementary public school.

If people feel strongly about restoring Stuart Wood as a school, it will require a focused effort from residents and businesses to lobby our Provincial Government, School District 73, along with both Tk’emlups te Secwépemc Council and City Council.

When successful, we could save Province and resident taxpayers some money, restore an outstanding heritage site and help create a more balanced and vibrant Downtown community by attracting more young families to move Downtown.


About Mel Rothenburger (9222 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

4 Comments on FEATURED COMMENT – Keeping Stuart Wood as a school needs a strong lobby

  1. Don Drysdale // October 5, 2020 at 9:54 AM // Reply

    Yes Yes but but the historic, heritage aspect. Gees we are rewriting history daily, tearing down statues and so on. Trying to retrofit this building to a modern building with access to all will be a money trap. You say $5 mil will do it, good luck with that and the annual maintenance not to mention handicap access problems. School district should plan for the future by tearing it down and building a modern school. Save some bricks if you want but the rest is an asbestos, outdated facility. Where are the greenies about net zero building? A school will be definitely required with any family growth downtown. Plan for it and get at it.

    • Even at more than $5 million, far less than the $20-30 million estimated for a new school. School district will pay maintenance as they do for all schools. Asbestos can be cleaned up and access for all can be worked out to make a safe, functional school. The greenest option for any building is to clean, retrofit, fix, and keep it.

  2. We have a huge payroll both for administration/bureaucracy and elected officials. One would hope, actually expect, sensible ideas to be fully and completely implemented without perturbing the electorate even more than they already are. It makes sense for the City to lobby and work with other government entities to make sure the goal of infill and indirectly the goal of sustainability, is implemented the cheapest and most long term way possible. To all of you an that payroll, get to work!

  3. Deveen Martin // October 4, 2020 at 10:31 AM // Reply

    Definitely a good idea for school in the area. The Kelsondevelopment in the area will hopefully liven up the area As a long time resident who has lived in that area. I would like to suggest to Jason Fawcett that you not demolish some of the older homes especially if they have any unique features like the round Tourette etc but consult with three Kamloops History group & choose perhaps one or two of the homes &restore their features m my asking them into a heritage site so that people could be aware of the history etc then have some green space close buy so people could have opportunity for a rest stop etc. There is a lot of history around let’s give others opportunity to know about it &not destroy it all

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