News Flash


Posted on: August 27, 2020

Historic Bauer Community Building Project

Bauer Building

BCRec_Set_20.08.04_Page_01Note: This project overview was provided by the Historic Bauer Building Advisory Group.

Click on images throughout this post to view the entire pdf plan document, or click here.

A brief timeline of the project

•  In 2019, the City hosted several community meetings to educate citizens on the building donation offered from the Steve and Allison Bauer Estate.

• Shortly after the Council voted to accept the building donation, the Bauer Community Building Advisory Group was formed.

• The Advisory Group worked with Jay Zimmerschied Architecture to create the proposed plan with recommendations from the State Historic Preservation Office to insure and take advantage of tax credits and historic integrity.

Two community surveys have been completed to gather input from citizens, and council held a work session with the advisory group and architect on August 25, 2020. 

Community Survey 1 Results

Community Survey 2 Results

Work Session Live Stream


What the Preliminary Plan Includes:

• Parking on the west side with new sidewalk areas to add more parking and accessibility.

• Utilizing existing perimeter tunnels for plumbing and mechanical access where possible to cut down on costs.

• Entry vestibule with reception area. Reception area includes windows to view and monitor incoming traffic and activities in the gym area as well as the Youth Area/Game Room

• Youth Area/Game Room

• Warming Kitchen for catering events.

• Two Multi-purpose rooms, (approximately 21 x 23’) can be open to one large room (approximately 21’ x 46’)

• Multiple storage rooms for equipment/tables & chairs for events.

• Multiple sport options for court area:

  • Retractable Basketball (Not official size), in addition 2 non-retractable hoops on west side.
  • Retractable Batting cage
  • Retractable Volleyball court, (official size height restricted)
  • 2 Official sized Pickelball courts

• Rest room facilities (No shower facilities to cut down on upkeep and liabilities)



Upstairs Area includes:

• 4 office spaces (approximately 11’ x 15’) with dual doors to cut down on noise concerns

• Conference Room (approximately 13 x 15’0

• Break Room

• Rest room

• Viewing Platform overlooking the court area. One row of seating with standing behind for improved sight lines.

• Offices and viewing platform contain solar tubes for natural lighting.


Working with SHPO

• Current floor is not reusable, but we can salvage what we can and propose using it as a unique and aesthetic drop ceiling in Conference Room and possibly on the wall in the vestibule.

• Replacing the current boarded windows with approved “like” windows to maintain historic feel and add lots of natural light.

• They did allow us to cut into some existing areas to help with viewing and monitoring areas.

Possible Facility Uses

• Free use by all of our community members (excluding use of the entire space for closed events, i.e. banquets, etc). Possible card system similar to what is in use at Rock Chalk Park.

• Senior events with separate private meeting space. Could include Senior meals with use of catering kitchen.

• Place for area youth to gather safely and socialize

• Additional place for community to exercise and practice especially during cold months

• Meeting facilities for area clubs and events

• Additional possible booth space/possible quilt show during Maple Leaf Festival (possible revenue generator)


• 1.69 M with estimated tax credit project value from SHPO ($450,539.76)

• Estimate only, NOT A BID (Typically, the Engineer estimates 10-20% more than actual costs)

• Bids would give preference to Baldwin-based companies; and request local sub-contractors when ever possible)

The roof has already been replaced and the next step is replacement/installation of HVAC equipment to assist with mold remediation in order to protect the existing building from future decay and additional costs.


Funding possibilities discussed by advisory group:

Option 1:

Quarter Cent Sales Tax increase (from 9% to 9.25%) 25 cents per $100 spent

This would raise $120,000/yr.

95,000 /yr. bond payment

20,000 /yr. for maintenance

Leaves 5,000/yr. left in a bond to accrue interest for future

Option 2:

Half-Cent Sales Tax (From 9% to 9.5%) 50 cents per $100 spent

Raise $240,000/yr.

95,000 /yr. bond payment

20,000 for maintenance

Leaves 125,000 /yr. left in a bond for 10 years = 1.2 million for future

*Current rates of surrounding towns: Lawrence 9.3%, Ottawa 9.6%, Edgerton 8.98%, Gardner 9.475%, Eudora 9.5%

Grant funding

As a historic building, some amount of grant funding is definitely a possibility.

Tax credits


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