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Published September 2nd, 2020
OUSD approved new multi-purpose room at front of Sleepy Hollow
Sleepy Hollow Elementary School multi-purpose room Option 4 - New MPR at Lower Parking Lot.

The existing multi-purpose room at Sleepy Hollow Elementary School will be demolished and a new one built at the entrance to the school. Having adopted a plan to have all students and staff shelter in the multi-purpose room in the event of a wildfire, and installing a 10,000 gallon tank to enable the Moraga-Orinda Fire District to protect that single structure, the Orinda Union School District board undertook a study of whether the existing structure could be renovated or should be replaced. The board, at its Aug. 10 meeting, considered various options, but selected option 4, which was the recommendation of the bond executive team. The project will be funded by bond funds.
Under option 4, part of the location of the existing multi-purpose room will become a parking lot to replace the one currently in front of the school, and a new multi-purpose room will be built at the front of the school. HKIT Architect Inc.'s Principal Architect Dara Youngdale gave the presentation and answered the board's questions. Hilary Weiner wanted to know if the costs for relocating the building were included, and Youngdale said they were, including removing the existing solar structure and moving the portable buildings. Youngdale said that it is not anticipated that the water tank would be moved, but rather that a line would be run from the tank to the new multi-purpose room.
Board member Jason Kaune said that the committee has done great work. He added that the loss of the space currently outside of the multi-purpose room will be offset by excitement of potential use of the uphill space for other things. Board president Cara Hoxie said that the new plaza in the front and also a fence for the front of the school creates more of a contained campus environment than in the past.
Board vice president and committee member Liz Daoust had supported the option of building a new MPR in the existing location, but said she had really come around to see all the benefits, including the exciting opportunity to use the existing space after the existing building is gone.
In public comments, parent Sarah Cherry was enthusiastic about having the school all on one level. She believes it will vastly improve the look of the school. The measure was approved unanimously and the board will move forward to rapidly advance the project, with architectural plans by HKIT Architects, Inc., to be submitted to the Division of the State Architect in a timely manner.
Sleepy Hollow Principal Patsy Templeton added a big thank you to the committee, staff and parents tasked with finding the safest place on campus to convene. Option 4 does that and more, she said. The end result is going to be fabulous, Templeton concluded.

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