UNION GROVE — Work is getting underway for the Union Grove Elementary School addition funded by a November referendum, according to District Administrator Brenda Stevenson.
Voters approved by a decisive margin — 63 percent for to 37 percent against — the $7,995,000 referendum that budgeted for a bevy of renovations and an addition of four classrooms, a courtyard and a centralized flexible learning space. The loan will be repaid over 20 years.
Stevenson said she hopes to have all referendum work complete by the beginning of the 2019-20 school year.
“We’re picking away as much as we can,” Stevenson said.
Over winter break, the district replaced its water heaters, and workers have been coming in on second shift since February to replace lights. To make sure the projects move smoothly, contractors also are able to work during school hours, provided it does not interfere with school activities.
The district has canceled all summer classes and activities at the school, 1745 Milldrum St., to allow uninhibited construction of the addition and courtyard, Stevenson said.
“I did not want to have trucks coming in and out of here and kids around,” she said.
Milwaukee architectural firm Plunkett Raysich Architects is designing the addition while Burlington-based Scherrer Construction Co. is doing the building.
The Village Plan Commission on March 4 gave the the go-ahead for the addition, meaning construction can begin as soon as possible.
“It’s getting very exciting,” Stevenson said.
When the addition is completed, fifth-grade classes will be relocated to the end of the school currently housing 4K through fourth grade. The other end will house the middle school classrooms.
The tax impact from the referendum is about 93 cents per $1,000 in assessed valuation. In 2021-22, district officials project that taxes will drop by about $2.14 per $1,000 in assessed valuation when previous debt expires.
Prior to November, the district last had a referendum in 2001. That referendum funded a major addition to what was then Union Grove Middle School to allow for the addition of primary grade students that had been housed at the old Union Grove Grade School on 14th Street. The addition was completed in 2003.