Brainerd School District Referendum Projects

The Brainerd School District passed a monumental referendum on April 10, 2018. Widseth helped the district with pre-referendum services and we have been involved in all thirteen projects to varying degrees. The projects were split up into three waves over approximately four years. Learn how Widseth helped Brainerd dramatically transform its schools.

01

Wave 1 Projects

Baxter Elementary, Nisswa Elementary, Harrison Elementary, Forestview Middle School

02

Wave 2 Projects

Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts, Garfield Elementary, Lowell Elementary, Riverside Elementary, Warrior Early Learning Center

03

Wave 3 Projects

Brainerd High School & South Campus, Brainerd Learning Center, Washington Educational Services Building, Lincoln Education Center

13

Total Projects

270

Total Classrooms

1,000,000+

Total Square Feet

$205,000,000

Total Construction Cost

Cori Reynolds - Brainerd Public Schools
Cori Reynolds
Brainerd Public Schools
Former Director of Community Education & Communications

“The video we created with Widseth for the Blueprint 181 building referendum in 2018 was a game changer. It transformed an ambitious idea for the future of our community’s schools into a vision people could wrap their minds around and ultimately embrace.”

Wave 1 Projects

Baxter Elementary School

On May 12, students, staff, city officials, school board members, and parents convened at Baxter Elementary School to dedicate the building. With capacity for 625 students, the new school includes general and special service classrooms, collaborative learning spaces, small group/conference rooms, teacher resource rooms, art/science/tech room, media center, music room, a two-station gymnasium with a stage area, kitchen/cafeteria, and administrative office and support spaces. Dedicated outdoor activity spaces adjacent to the building include a playground and physical education areas. This project was part of the bond referendum that passed in 2018. Visit our Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $20,340,000

Tammy Stellmach_Square
Dr. Tammy Stellmach
Baxter Elementary School
Principal

“I had my team of Baxter staff working with the Widseth architects and interior designers. They often came back with a new design that was exactly what we wanted. They have helped create some amazing learning spaces for our students.”

Nisswa Elementary School

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Nisswa Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 3. The project includes relocating the main office to be part of a new controlled entry along with administrative support spaces, expanding the gym, constructing 12 new general classrooms and two special education classrooms, remodeling of all existing classroom spaces, and reconfiguring the kitchen and cafeteria to improve food service and efficiency. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. The improvements at Nisswa Elementary are part of the bond referendum that passed in 2018, which includes thirteen total projects across the Brainerd School District. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $11,010,000

Molly Raske - Nisswa Principal
Molly Raske
Nisswa Elementary School
Principal

“We found that students had more engagement if we provided furniture that allowed them to move. I’m so excited that opportunity is going to be at every school. We need to teach students to advocate for what they need as a leaner.”

Harrison Elementary School

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Harrison Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 5. The project includes a two-story addition to the existing K-4 facility as well as site improvements, most notably the separation of buses and parent vehicles. The main office was relocated to provide a much-needed controlled entry along with administrative support spaces creating safety and efficiency for students and staff. The project also includes multiple general classroom spaces, a two-station gymnasium, media center, and music room. The cafeteria and kitchen were pulled out of the lower level to improve food service safety and efficiency. The project also includes an elevator and ramp to provide accessibility throughout the facility. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture through DD, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $12,860,000

Forestview Middle School

At Forestview Middle School the main entry was reconfigured to provide a controlled entry and improvements were made to parent pick-up/drop-off traffic flow. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture

Year Completed: 2019

Construction Cost: $790,000

Wave 2 Projects

Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts

Gichi-ziibi means ‘great river’ in Ojibwe. “The new name brings us a step closer to acknowledging the indigenous lands, history, and current place of the Ojibwe people of the Brainerd Lakes Region,” said Tribal Community Facilitator Susan Beaulieu. The Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts is connected to Brainerd High School, which sits on the banks of the Mississippi River. Question three of the referendum proposed upgrading the 950-seat auditorium addition to a 1,200 seat performing arts center. These improvements include the addition of an orchestra pit and enhancements to the lighting, stage, acoustic, sound systems, and associated support spaces. David Peterson, President of Peterson AV Consulting, Inc., said, “I love the acoustics of Brainerd. I think it’s one of the nicest halls I’ve been in, acoustically, in the last ten years. It’s a technically and architecturally wonderful space.”

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture, Interior Design, and FF&E Planning

Year Completed: 2021

Construction Cost: $8,000,000

Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts Grand Opening

The grand opening of the Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts featured band, choir, and theatre performances by Brainerd High School students. Watch this video to hear reactions from school district staff and community members.

Christmas at the Job Site During Construction

Watch as students from Brainerd High School’s Music Department perform a stirring Christmas carol from an as-yet unconstructed stage, surrounded by steel and undaunted by the frigid December conditions.

Heidi Hahn - Brainerd Public Schools Superintendent
Heidi Hahn
Brainerd Public Schools
Superintendent

“It is an AMAZING performing arts center. It’s a gift to our kids for sure, but even more so to our community.”

Garfield Elementary School

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Harrison Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 5. The project includes a two-story addition to the existing K-4 facility as well as site improvements, most notably the separation of buses and parent vehicles. The main office was relocated to provide a much-needed controlled entry along with administrative support spaces creating safety and efficiency for students and staff. The project also includes multiple general classroom spaces, a two-station gymnasium, media center, and music room. The cafeteria and kitchen were pulled out of the lower level to improve food service safety and efficiency. The project also includes an elevator and ramp to provide accessibility throughout the facility. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture through DD, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $12,860,000

Lowell Elementary School

At Forestview Middle School the main entry was reconfigured to provide a controlled entry and improvements were made to parent pick-up/drop-off traffic flow. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture

Year Completed: 2019

Construction Cost: $790,000

Riverside Elementary School

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Harrison Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 5. The project includes a two-story addition to the existing K-4 facility as well as site improvements, most notably the separation of buses and parent vehicles. The main office was relocated to provide a much-needed controlled entry along with administrative support spaces creating safety and efficiency for students and staff. The project also includes multiple general classroom spaces, a two-station gymnasium, media center, and music room. The cafeteria and kitchen were pulled out of the lower level to improve food service safety and efficiency. The project also includes an elevator and ramp to provide accessibility throughout the facility. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture through DD, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $12,860,000

Warrior Early Learning Center

At Forestview Middle School the main entry was reconfigured to provide a controlled entry and improvements were made to parent pick-up/drop-off traffic flow. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture

Year Completed: 2019

Construction Cost: $790,000

Wave 3 Projects

Brainerd High School

Gichi-ziibi means ‘great river’ in Ojibwe. “The new name brings us a step closer to acknowledging the indigenous lands, history, and current place of the Ojibwe people of the Brainerd Lakes Region,” said Tribal Community Facilitator Susan Beaulieu. The Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts is connected to Brainerd High School, which sits on the banks of the Mississippi River. Question three of the referendum proposed upgrading the 950-seat auditorium addition to a 1,200 seat performing arts center. These improvements include the addition of an orchestra pit and enhancements to the lighting, stage, acoustic, sound systems, and associated support spaces. David Peterson, President of Peterson AV Consulting, Inc., said, “I love the acoustics of Brainerd. I think it’s one of the nicest halls I’ve been in, acoustically, in the last ten years. It’s a technically and architecturally wonderful space.”

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture, Interior Design, and FF&E Planning

Year Completed: 2021

Construction Cost: $8,000,000

Brainerd High School Furniture Fair

The grand opening of the Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts featured band, choir, and theatre performances by Brainerd High School students. Watch this video to hear reactions from school district staff and community members.

Jack & Bore Solution Saves Project $600,000

Watch as students from Brainerd High School’s Music Department perform a stirring Christmas carol from an as-yet unconstructed stage, surrounded by steel and undaunted by the frigid December conditions.

Heidi Hahn - Brainerd Public Schools Superintendent
Heidi Hahn
Brainerd Public Schools
Superintendent

“It is an AMAZING performing arts center. It’s a gift to our kids for sure, but even more so to our community.”

Brainerd High School South Campus

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Harrison Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 5. The project includes a two-story addition to the existing K-4 facility as well as site improvements, most notably the separation of buses and parent vehicles. The main office was relocated to provide a much-needed controlled entry along with administrative support spaces creating safety and efficiency for students and staff. The project also includes multiple general classroom spaces, a two-station gymnasium, media center, and music room. The cafeteria and kitchen were pulled out of the lower level to improve food service safety and efficiency. The project also includes an elevator and ramp to provide accessibility throughout the facility. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture through DD, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $12,860,000

Brainerd Learning Center

At Forestview Middle School the main entry was reconfigured to provide a controlled entry and improvements were made to parent pick-up/drop-off traffic flow. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture

Year Completed: 2019

Construction Cost: $790,000

Washington Educational Services Building

Students, staff, school board members, and parents gathered to celebrate the Harrison Elementary School additions and renovations project dedication on May 5. The project includes a two-story addition to the existing K-4 facility as well as site improvements, most notably the separation of buses and parent vehicles. The main office was relocated to provide a much-needed controlled entry along with administrative support spaces creating safety and efficiency for students and staff. The project also includes multiple general classroom spaces, a two-station gymnasium, media center, and music room. The cafeteria and kitchen were pulled out of the lower level to improve food service safety and efficiency. The project also includes an elevator and ramp to provide accessibility throughout the facility. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture through DD, Interior Design, FF&E Planning, and Structural Engineering

Year Completed: 2020

Construction Cost: $12,860,000

Lincoln Education Center Deconstruction

At Forestview Middle School the main entry was reconfigured to provide a controlled entry and improvements were made to parent pick-up/drop-off traffic flow. Facility maintenance on select items inside and on the exterior of the building were also part of the overall project. Visit Widseth’s Education portfolio page to learn more about how we help school districts across the state.

Widseth Services Provided: Pre-referendum Services, District-wide Design Standards, Land Surveying, Civil Engineering, Architecture

Year Completed: 2019

Construction Cost: $790,000

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