Acting on a city staff recommendation, members of the Sun Prairie Plan Commission on Sept. 10 recommended city council approval of a Precise Implementation Plan (PIP) for a 10,000 sq. ft. Foss Wisconsin Swim School to be located in the Grand on Main development.
Community Development Director Scott Kugler said during his presentation that the proposed facility is to be located at 2670 W. Main St., at the northeast corner of West Main Street and North City Station Drive, and is within the Kraemer Development, LLC Planned Development for Grand on Main.
The site will have entrance-only access from North City Station Drive, and will be integrated into the shared parking and circulation system that has been developed for this planned commercial site. There are two additional ingress/egress drives within the development from North City Station Drive to the north.
If the city council gives final PIP approval, the single-story facility will be clad primarily in EFIS, with a decorative concrete block base and both stone and fiber cement panels as accent materials, according to Kugler’s report. The city has emphasized the need to blend in with the surrounding Grand on Main architecture by using a storefront design concept.
The main entrance to the facility is from the parking lot to the north, but the building is designed with comparable architectural detailing on all four facades, presenting an attractive appearance to both adjacent streets.
Kugler also wrote in the memo to the commission that the property is subject to the Westside Traffic Impact Fee, which will need to be paid prior to the issuance of a building permit. The applicant has indicated its is aware of the fee, which will be finalized at the time full building plans are submitted.
Scott O’Halloran, Chief Financial Officer for the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based company, said the company started in a church pool with 23 students and next week will open its 17th location in St. Louis, Mo. The company has six locations in Illinois, including several in the Chicago area, one each in Missouri (soon to be two), North Dakota and Iowa, and eight in Minnesota. The Sun Prairie location will be the first Foss Swim School in Wisconsin, and registration is already being accepted on the company’s website.
The company, founded in 1993 by Jon and Susan Foss, teaches participants from six months to adult with the goal of progression and a long-term-goal to graduate as a complete swimmer. Foss Swim Schools measure mastery of skills, not just class completion, as a sign of readiness to move on.
Two alders asked questions about the availability of the school’s pool — which will be 60 to 70 feet long — for other activities besides learning to swim. O’Halloran told District 2 Alder Theresa Stevens that the pool would not be ideal for swim team practice because the pool is kept at a consistent 91 degrees, instead of the 81 to 84 degrees that swim teams typically keep the pool at.
And in response to District 3 Alder Maureen Crombie, O’Halloran said the school would have to consider any Sun Prairie Parks and Recreation Department water aerobics course requests as it begins to market itself following final city approval.
The company’s schools also offer family swims based on pool availability, “fun meets” to demonstrate skill mastery and skill clinics for swimmers who might need extra help.
Commissioners voted unanimously to recommend final city council approval of the Foss Wisconsin Swim School PIP.