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V3_roger_wolcott

In 2012 the Windsor Board of Education implemented an elementary school reorganization that changed the boundaries for full day kindergarten programs within the district. The kindergarten programs were placed in other school facilities therefore the classroom space at the Wolcott Early Childhood School was no longer needed.  In the summer of 2013 the Board of Education voted to turn over the control of the building to the Windsor Town Council.  Since that time the building has been partially occupied by Team Paragon a community based not-for profit organization.

On December 10, 2014 town staff hosted a community meeting at the Wolcott School to receive input regarding possible re-uses of the building. Approximately 20 persons attended the meeting and provided a range of ideas.  Below is a recap of the re-use ideas.

 

  • Early Childhood School for 3 and 4 year olds
  • Elderly Assisted Housing 
  • Mixed Use of Early Childhood School and Elderly Assisted Housing
  • Public Pre-School – infant through 4 year olds 
  • Family Services Center and Early Childhood School
  • Small Business Incubator Center 
  • Lease Building to Capitol Region Education Council for autism program
  • Sell Building to Capitol Region Education Council for autism program 
  • Allow robotics team to continue partial use of building

 
Click here to take a brief survey and let us know what your top three choices are from the above list.

If you have other suggestions for the re-use of Roger Wolcott please feel free to add them in the comments below.

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5 Responses

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Pat Snietka about 9 years ago

I believe that it would be an ideal Senior Center. The present Senior Center, although it has recently been refurbished, is not up to par like the senior centers in all the surrounding towns. The senior center should be used for just that SENIORS! Not for recreation, not for board of education, not for summer activities like theater productions, but strictly for SENIORS!

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elyse carroll about 9 years ago

I attended the old Roger Wolcott school that stood in the parking lot. I grew up in Windsor an attended a few schools. It is nice to see the town supporting the youth of Windsor with the use of the school for the Windsor robotics programs.

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Burt Smith about 9 years ago

Before commenting, I need to be entirely up front here, I'm a big supporter of the FIRST robotics team, and it would be a shame to shuffle them around yet again - however, it is also a shame that two thirds of the building remains vacant.

As for the ideas above, is there any more information and/or analysis for the above ideas?

For example, many of the ideas seem centered around housing and/or services for the old or young - but has there been analysis of demand or cost of modifications would to bring the building up to code? Also, these ideas seem like they would be in competition with existing businesses in town. It's easy to say "make it a preschool," but that's much harder to do in practice, especially when there's unknown demand (or it would replace a tax-paying business with something supported by taxpayer dollars).

The "Small Business" center appeals the most to me; I've seen other disused schools rent space (that's how the Books and Birds used book store got started in Vernon, for example), but the building might need Internet and phone upgrades for any business/customer to give it a serious look.

Many old factories and the like are being repurposed as small offices (we recently helped some friends move into office space in 30 Arbor Street in Hartford, and Artspace Hartford is similar), and I can easily see the building being useful for that without extensive upgrades.

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Pat Miele about 9 years ago

I like the idea of renting the space for business startups. There is space on the upper floor of 901 Main in Manchester that provides that service.

However, I think there is a real need for meeting space for youth organizations and other not-for-profits. The 4-H Clubs, 4-H Fair Association, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Civitans, Jaycees, etc... need to meet (usually) monthly and finding an affordable meeting space is always a challenge. I would like to see one or more rooms available for this purpose.

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Elizabeth VacaRanieri, Owner, Personal Space about 9 years ago

There are many elements to consider when reusing a building like this. If one has not been conducted yet, an appraisal company could create a report determining the highest and best use(s) for this space. Once the best uses are determined and the public has decided how the space will be used, someone will need to manage the use of this space. The way I see it, conducting an appraisal to professionally, financially and for maximum utility determine the best use of the space is the best way to start on the right track with reusing this large building. Securing a property management company to oversee the use and security of the space is another important early move. The management company upholds the tenant by laws, provides access, collects rent, maintains property(snow removal, repairs) and other important tasks. The total costs of these operational costs need to be understood before soliciting for tenants and determining rents.

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