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The Gallatin Gateway School District is in the process of planning for much-needed upgrades to their school at 100 Mill Street. The core of the school is the 1914 brick two-story portion that is a visible landmark at the main entry into town. This school reflects the growth of what was Salesville and the faith that the founding families had in the success of their rural community.  

Unfortunately, one of the options the school district is considering includes demolition of the original 1914 building. The original building would be replaced with a slightly larger look-alike building. There are several difficulties with this replacement scenario:

• Every time a historic building is demolished, it is lost forever.  

• A look-alike replacement is a false representation of history.

• The school can be renovated to perform as well as a new building.

• Building renovation almost always yields fewer environmental impacts than new construction when comparing buildings of similar size and functionality.

These negative impacts can be avoided by rehabilitating the school. As the adults in the room, we need to teach our children to respect their heritage and their planet. Being able to touch and use the original building makes history real to them. And retaining the building reduces our impact on the environment.

I urge our Gallatin Gateway voters to take the School District’s survey. It is available online at until Nov. 23 at noon.

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Lesley M. Gilmore

Gallatin Gateway