Early childhood facility planned near Liberty Park
Part of site reserved for future apartmentsNovember 21st, 2018
Predevelopment plans on file with the city of Spokane show a new $900,000 early childhood education facility is planned just south of Interstate 90, near Liberty Park.
Shannon Meagher, of Kiemle Hagood, who represents the project’s owner, Spokane-based nonprofit Proclaim Liberty Inc., says the building will be constructed on a vacant lot just east of the Liberty Park Terrace Apartments, at 1405 E. Hartson, which are also owned by Proclaim Liberty Inc.
Meagher says the nonprofit purchased the site earlier this year with the intention of building a new facility to house its Early Childhood Education Assistance Program.
“The current ECEAP is operating out of the community center at the apartments, which is an older building without a lot of space,” she says. “Building a new facility will allow them to add a full-time classroom and be fully in compliance with the most recent state rules and regulations for Early Childhood Education facilities.”
ZBA Architecture of Spokane is designing the project, which is planned to be a one-story, 4,500-square-foot building.
Meagher says that the building will include two classrooms, two offices for family service coordinators, one office for the program director, a lobby, a conference room, a staff workroom, a kitchen, and a laundry room.
The completed facility will serve about 60 students and will likely have a 10-person staff, she says.
The project will also include constructing a playground, surface parking lot, trash enclosure, and a narrow one-way driveway on the site’s west side.
Plans also show that a portion of the site will be reserved for future apartments, something Meagher says is part of a requirement by the city of Spokane.
“Proclaim Liberty purchased the site using community development block grant funds from the city of Spokane,” she says. “That funding requires us to include a set number of mixed-income apartment units at the site. I believe the requirement is for 10 units, but we anticipate being able to build more than that. However, that portion might not be added for a couple more years.”
Because the site includes rocky and steep cliff-like elements, Meagher says much of the design is still being determined.
“A lot of things are still in flux right now, but we’re hoping to have a finished design ready this spring,” she says.
The start of construction will be dependent upon available funding, she says.
“We’re still assembling the necessary funding for this project,” Meagher says. “The state recently came out with some capital funds to build and renovate ECEAP facilities, but funding is very competitive, and we weren’t selected this time around.”
Meagher says that once the project is fully funded, demolition of rocks at the site can begin, followed by construction.