Rendering of plans for the new Oltman Middle School South Washington School District/Architects Rego Youngquist

Rendering of plans for the new Oltman Middle School.

South Washington County (Minn.) district breaks ground on middle school

The South Washington County district expects to open a new campus for Oltman Middle School in 2018.

The South Washington County (Minn.) district has broken ground in Cottage Grove on a new site for Oltman Middle School.

The district expects to open the new facility in 2018-19. It will replace the existing Oltman campus in St. Paul Park.

Parts of that campus are more than 70 years old, and the building features are not equitable compared with other middle schools in the district.

The new Oltman will provide an additional 300 middle school seats for the district. It will have a two-story classroom wing and an activities wing. The classroom wing will have 30 core classrooms and art, world language, special education rooms; collaborative learning spaces and a media center; resource and conference rooms; locker bays, restrooms, mechanical and custodial spaces; and administrative offices.

The Oltman activities wing includes classrooms for music, band and orchestra, a lecture hall that can be converted to a performance stage, a three-station gym, an eight-lane competitive pool with diving well, locker rooms, and a cafeteria and kitchen.

Funding for the school comes from a $96 million bond referendum that voters approved last year. by a five-vote margin.

That approval was in doubt until January because of five disputed ballots that could have overturned the referendum results. But a judge ruled that the voter's intent on those ballots could not be determined, so they could not be counted.

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