Renderings of first school planned for Folsom Ranch released

By: Telegraph Staff
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The Folsom Cordova Unified School District has released renderings of the first elementary school planned for Folsom Ranch.

The new school is designed as a two-story single-building that will accommodate 668 students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

“The design creates a high-level learning environment through the use of flexible spaces that are easily adaptable to changing student populations and educational programs,” said Matt Washburn, director of facilities and planning for the district. “The teaching spaces will provide students, teachers and the school community the opportunity to develop collaboration and communication skills that will be necessary to build relationships and thrive in the global workplace.”

Planned to open as early as 2020, based on population needs, Washburn said the entire site is designed for more efficient use, improved supervision and better security due to fewer exterior doors and a single point of entry.

“Quality schools are a hallmark for which Folsom is known,” said JoAnne Reinking, Folsom Cordova Unified School District board member. “The schools at Folsom Ranch are no exception and will maintain Folsom’s excellent educational standards.”

As the Folsom Ranch site is built throughout the coming 25-to-30 years, there are plans for five elementary schools, each immediately adjacent to a 5-acre park site, as well as new middle and high schools. All of the schools are planned to be built at a pace reflecting the construction of new neighborhoods. The construction of the schools will be financially independent and at no cost to existing Folsom residents.

Construction on the first new homes at Folsom Ranch is scheduled to start this month with model homes completed in the summer.

Highlights of the Folsom Plan Area include 138 acres of parks; 30 miles of trails that will connect to the city’s extensive trail system; more than 1,000 acres of open space; more than 500 acres of contiguous oak woodlands; new schools; a transit corridor and roadway improvements to enhance traffic flow; and up to 8,000 new jobs with a planned jobs/housing balance that will allow many residents to reduce or eliminate their commutes.

The 3,520-acre Folsom Plan Area was annexed into the City of Folsom in 2011. Planned in accordance with Measure W, a ballot measure passed by Folsom voters, landowners were required to secure an independent water supply for the plan area, provide transportation improvements to mitigate traffic impacts, preserve 30 percent of the land as natural open space, and allow for new schools, all at no cost to existing Folsom residents. The plan that met those requirements was adopted by the Folsom City Council in 2012.

The plan area was the subject of a visioning process instituted by the City of Folsom with hundreds of residents at dozens of public hearings addressing a range of issues including land use, open space, transportation, and financing. Their recommendations resulted in scenarios reviewed by the Folsom City Council in 2005, which ultimately evolved into the design adopted by the city seven years later.