2019-2020 Capital Improvement Projects

  • East High School Athletic Field Improvement

    Each year the Wauwatosa School District evaluates annual Capital Improvement Projects that are priority items to address via its operating budget. 

    In 2019, one of the large Capital Improvement Projects is a proposed replacement of the East High School north activity field. The field is proposed for replacement due to safety concerns caused by the shifting of old home foundations beneath it. The foundations and conditions beneath the soil of the field have created hazardous conditions including sinking holes and “hilling”, which creates serious concern for injuries of those using the field. 

    The current field conditions require substantial maintenance and downtime which leaves competitive teams unable to use it for practice or competition for extended periods of time. This is an on-going concern each year. 

     The concern for the safety of those that use the field has been repeatedly voiced by athletes and their parents at Wauwatosa School Board meetings and via correspondence with District staff over the past several years.


    In order to make this a long-lasting safe area for use, the foundations need to be removed. The area would then be backfilled with better soils and while doing that work, it is recommended to improve the layout of the field to allow for adequately sized field play.

    When analyzing best options for replacement, the District considered cost, as well as maximizing the amount of field usage - both in hours and participants.

    • As a result of that analysis, it is proposed to replace the field with artificial turf.
    • The initial cost for the turf is about $300,000 more than natural grass field replacement however, the turf is more cost-effective than grass over the course of 12 years when analyzing past years spending and comparing future maintenance needs.
    • The artificial turf will allow for expanded usage in hours, number of people and activities. The proposed turf will be able to serve soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, football, kickball, baseball, softball, track and field, marching band, physical education classes, and recreational activities and sports, which aligns with the Active Tosa Plan. The Active Tosa Plan was a study done in partnership between the Wauwatosa School District and the City of Wauwatosa to improve outdoor recreational and green spaces.
    • WHY TURF? -- View the breakdown of cost comparison here.  (PDF - Click the "+" button to zoom in. Best viewed on desktop of laptop)

    In an effort to extend the useful hours for the field, the proposal includes a separate second project for field lighting. It is anticipated that a significant donation from The Tosa Kickers Soccer Club would help fund the lighting.

    Additional cost-effective measures are in place by proposing to address the field project at the same time as construction for other site improvements that are part of the referendum. The referendum projects include a redesign of the parking lot to increase safety and function, as well as work on the loading dock area to improve safety. To avoid reworking or additional construction in future years on this smaller, difficult-to-access site, the recommendation is to complete all construction on the entire site at once.



    Proposal Presented to Wauwatosa School Board on May 6 (PDF)

    • Replacement of Multi-Use Activity Field - Primary lines will be Soccer. Secondary lines will be women and men’s lacrosse. Background lines will be for football lines with hash marks (no numbers) for marching band
    • Replacement of Bleacher Seating on the Site - Replacement of existing bleachers with new, removable, bleachers and would accommodate seating up to 200.
    • Addition of Score Board to the Site (16' x 8')
    • Addition of 4 LED Lights to Field Area - The lights are 70’ tall to allow for best directional lighting possible on site. The height actually helps reduce spillage of light.  The lights would have an automatic timer that turns lights off at 9pm at the latest.
    • Parking lot reconfiguration and resurfacing - Replacement of existing parking lot with safer parking lot layout, maintaining the same amount of parking spots.

    Below is a photo of the updated site layout, which moved the parking lot further back from the neighboring property. View PDF version.


    Updated Site layout for East High School activity field



    Q: What is the Outdoor Spaces Plan?

    A: The Wauwatosa School District’s Outdoor Spaces Plan was presented to the Wauwatosa School Board in November 2018. It is the proposed implementation plan for portions of the Active Tosa Plan that directly correlate to the District. 

    Q: What is Active Tosa and The Active Tosa Plan

    A: Active Tosa is the Comprehensive Master Plan for parks, trails, open spaces, and recreational facilities within the City of Wauwatosa. It includes a review of City properties, Wauwatosa School District (WSD) properties, and some Milwaukee County parks. The plan developed through a community-driven process, evaluating existing open space, facilities, programming, demographic projections, changing trends, and level of service. Using this information, combined with community input, a list of priorities will be established for parks, trails, open spaces, and recreational facilities. The Active Tosa plan was crafted to provide the community with a clear delineation of action items and key steps needed to successfully implement the recommended improvements overtime.

    The Active Tosa Plan was created in September 2017.