Ralph Pesapane, the principal at , knows there will be one major adjustment that will be difficult for students and parents to get used to this year.
"The gazebo is closed to us," he said. "We can't use it anymore."
PSE&G owns the property along Southern Boulevard and which permitted the Chatham Township gazebo as a structure on the lot. This also means motorists can no longer use the parking lot or the park.
The dirt driveway and parking lot adjacent to the gazebo has traditionally been used as an alternative drop-off and pick-up location for people who wish to avoid the front of the school.
"This is big for us," Pesapane said. "They are not allowed to go there and pick up their kids anymore, starting Day One. That's no more an option."
PSE&G crews are already at work on the site as part of the company's North Central Reliability Project.
"I was worried about kids crossing there anyway. It got really dangerous. They're running along there, it's right close to the curb on Southern Boulevard, cars are whizzing by," Pesapane said.
Parents will have the option of dropping children off near , where an access road leads to the rear of Southern Boulevard School.
For those parents who do not want to use the front of the school, Pesapane said they need to consider Colony Pool as an option for picking up and dropping off their children.