WLC Project Feature: Oak View Elementary Gymnasium

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The 10,975-square-foot multipurpose room and gym at the Oak View Elementary School is the only one of its kind in the Ocean View School District - providing a place on campus for assemblies, community events, and athletics. The facility includes a basketball court, a full set of bleachers, restrooms, and a full stage with production lighting.

“It’s unique in … that it’s on an elementary campus,” District Superintendent Carol Hansen said. “Usually, gyms and multipurpose rooms of this scope are made for a middle school. So we’re fortunate to have this on an elementary campus to be able to offer after-school activities. But not only that, offer activities within the school day that enable students to participate in the gym.” Prior to this facility, temporary shade structures served as the lunch pavilion - with no indoor play areas available to students.

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The project came as the result of a settlement of a 2013 lawsuit against Rainbow Environmental Services, a disposal company with a waste transfer facility near Oak View Elementary. The Ocean View district alleged that dust and odors from the facility were making students sick. Ocean View School District and the surrounding community have long complained of the nauseating odors emanating from the facility, as well as the waste from seagulls attracted to the trash. Dust traveling from the concrete crushing machinery would settle at the school and in the neighborhood, coating the lunch tables and school grounds with a thin film of dust.

"This is something that we will not tolerate," Gina Clayton-Tarvin, an Ocean View School District Trustee, expressed during the ribbon cutting ceremony. "As a teacher myself, we call our students 'our kids.' And they really are our kids. And our teachers did a phenomenal job protecting our kids."

The suit was settled in November 2016, with Rainbow — now Republic Services — pledging to pay $4 million for the gymnasium and trees to create a barrier between the school and the waste facility on Nichols Lane. The company agreed to spend an additional $18 million on enclosing the trash facility and installing a ventilation and filtration system to mitigate noise and odors.

As the students, parents, and community members entered the gym for the first time moments after the ribbon cutting, the excitement in the air was palpable. Now students, staff, and the entire Oak View community have a dynamic place to learn, perform, play, and connect with each other.

WLC Architects is pleased to have a part in the positive impact this facility brings to the Oak View Elementary School and the community it serves.

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The smiles on the kids’ faces when they walk in for the first time - THAT is the reason why I design.
— Jim DiCamillo, President & Principal Architect