Plans move forward for Rhinelander athletic facility upgrades
By Eileen Persike
Plans for indoor and outdoor practice and game facilities for Rhinelander students and the community continued Monday night. After the Capital Projects Ad Hoc Committee heard proposals from three architectural firms it recommended hiring Rettler Corporation of Stevens Point for the design and construction management of the project.
Rettler has designed a number of high school athletic facilities as well as a dome project at UW-Oshkosh.
“I think their experience with the Oshkosh facility that was just built…I have a sense they have an understanding of putting this kind of project all together,” said committee chair Mike Roberts. “And I guess, most specifically, I’ve talked to people at Oshkosh and they’ve been happy with what they did there.”
The firm will be tasked with design and construction management of a dome structure, outdoor practice fields and softball field, redesign of the current baseball field, relocation of the shot put and discus throw pits, design for parking areas and storage buildings.
The cost to the district was quoted as a percentage of the project budget. Based on a $3.5 million to $6 million project (including the cost of work constructed and all sub consultant fees), Rettler will be paid 5.5% of that for its architectural design services and 2.5% for its construction management fee.
A team of committee members and administrators is expected to meet with Rettler within the next 10 days to begin work. The Hodag Schools Foundation has been fundraising for the project following a $500,000 donation from Dr. Lee Swank toward an indoor practice facility.
Last week Hodag Schools Foundation president David Heck announced that Tony and Lori Haug have have pledged $250,000 over several years, designated for improvements to the Hodag athletic multi-purpose complex. The Haug family has lived in Rhinelander for 21 years.
Tony is the recently retired president of ABX; Lori served on the Rhinelander Schools Education Foundation and Hodag Schools Foundation Board of Directors for many years and volunteered at numerous community events. Their three children attended public schools, played in sports and graduated from Rhinelander High School.
“We always believed that it was important to keep our children engaged in extracurricular activities, as it lends itself to higher educational achievement,” Tony Haug said. “Moreover, the indoor dome will help provide exercise opportunities for our community, which we believe leads to a healthier environment.”
Haug added that he is thankful for all of the hard work that ABX employees contributed to the company, and look forward to giving back to their families and their young children who will grow up in the district and benefit from these improvements.