After the Wautoma Area School District received favorable results to build a new elementary school from the community survey sent to residents in the fall, District Administrator Tom Rheinheimer and City of Wautoma Administrator/Treasurer Tommy Bohler have been working together to determine where a new school would fit best within the city limits.

 Following discussions with the Wautoma Area School Board of Education and the City of Wautoma Aldermen, it has been agreed that if the referendum passes on April 4th the new elementary school would be built in the Lake Ridge Subdivision, East of the City of Wautoma.

 “This is a perfect partnership between WASD and the City of Wautoma. Not only does this ensure that the children in our area continue to get the quality education they deserve, but an asset like an elementary school in Lake Ridge Subdivision will be a catalyst for development around it,” said Bohler. “This project will benefit everyone in our community for years to come.”

 The potential site would encompass 13 lots within the Lake Ridge Subdivision spanning from N. Century Drive to Lake Ridge Road on 21.61 acres of land. The current Riverview Elementary School sits on 6.7 acres with little room for growth as residents currently live on three sides of the building and the floodplain is too close to the school’s playground.

 “The current location simply does not have enough room which causes traffic issues and congestion in that neighborhood. The new location on the city-owned lots within the subdivision is ideal, since it frees up a congested residential area while also providing kids enough space for a safe, high-quality learning environment,” said Bohler.

 According to Rheinheimer, the WASD and Board of Education are excited about the Lake Ridge Subdivision as the possible location for the new elementary school as it allows for more surface parking, a smoother traffic flow, and provides students and teachers with an increased green space and environmental learning opportunities right outside their classrooms. This location could also allow for residential development within the city limits as additional housing could start to be built near the new building.

 “The cost of purchasing the property from the City of Wautoma for this new elementary school project is a fair and prudent transaction for both the WASD and the City of Wautoma,” said Rheinheimer. “We hope this business partnership with the City of Wautoma will lead to other potential ventures that will benefit the Wautoma Area School District, the City of Wautoma, and all of the other communities within the school district.”

 The Wautoma Area School District will be hosting two Community Engagement Sessions on Wednesday, March 1, and Wednesday, M

arch 22, at 6 PM in the Wautoma High School Field House, located at 514 S. Cambridge Street. The sessions will allow for the community to ask questions about the site, how the district made the decision to go to referendum, and how the new school would impact them financially.

  For more information regarding the WASD Elementary School Referendum, visit www.wautomasd.org.