OTTUMWA — Next week’s school board meeting includes discussion of a site analysis by DLR Group, the company hired by the Ottumwa school district to design a new elementary school.

The district has said it is looking at two sites as possible locations. One is the former Walsh site, but the district had cited exemptions in the state’s public meetings laws to keep the second site’s location under wraps. The school board wanted a site analysis done on the second site before making a decision.

Documents on the district’s website dated Oct. 10 revealed the location as the Ottumwa Country Club.

The reveal came in a “general proposal for the site assessment of the property being considered for a new elementary building.” In the proposal, the company said site selection assistance could be done in conjunction with pre-design activities.

Site selection analysis was priced at $9,000 for what was identified as “County Club Site.” That includes analysis of the approximate footprint for the school, the availability of utilities at the location and a “Site concept test fit” to look at access and traffic flow.

The company offered site acquisition coordination for $3,500, and conceptual land use plans and development agreements for a fee to be determined.

The country club was sold in 2017 to new owners, who opened up the facility’s lounge as a dining option for the public.

Discussion of a new elementary school comes as the district looks at expansion of the Pickwick Early Childhood Center. The center has exceeded the district’s expectations on enrollment and has reached its current capacity.

Expansion’s price tag is estimated at $5.2 million. Designs suggest the addition could ad another 20,270 square feet to the facility. That includes 10 classrooms, additional storage and office space, a secure entry, and a large room with movable walls that could be used for a range of activities.

The board meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Monday at SparkTank, 325 E. Main St., Ottumwa.

— Matt Milner can be reached at and followed on Twitter @mwmilner


Managing Editor

Matt Milner currently serves as the Courier's Managing Editor. Milner is a trained weather spotter and is usually outside if there are storms. He joined the Courier in 2002.

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