A comment from a football fan about the Crystal Lake South High School bleachers:
Your choice of pictures seems to be somewhat prejudicial; as ones who have been vilified unfairly by media with agendas, I hope you reflect on your role to enhance the quality of this debate.
First, to anyone who is familiar with the layout of South High athletics, the administration has obviously placed the Port a Potties as far away from the NIMBY’s as possible. They are under the scoreboard, close to the middle of the endzone, not under the stands where they are placed at most fields. The picture chosen is at an angle in which the perspective does not convey this to the uninformed reader.
Second, the before and after pictures were not from the same spot, and the after picture angle alludes to a major change in the height of the new stands. The primary expansion was at the sides, the height of the central portion was not enhanced very much. The only real change was to the abutters who are looking at the new sections at that side, not those who chose to buy property in the back of the existing prior stands.
Third, these people bought houses adjacent to the existing High School, and I beleive the field was already there since the 1970’s. Because they are adjacent to a school the marketability is enhanced. They did not suffer the extent of the drop in home values during the last 7 years that the 99% of District 155 taxpayers did who are not within a short walk of an existing school.
Fourth, as far as education value, when I was active at Prarie Ridge, we found that at least one fourth of the student body had active, defined roles on weekends that the varsity has a home game. No other function of the school has the level of participation that a home football game has. They provide the largest audiences the band will see all year. Look at the private sector alternatives, Marion Catholic and other private high schools plan alumni and fund raising events centered on the enthusiasm and excitement a large supportive crowd brings to campus.