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Stay current with our monthly e-newsletter featuring project updates, industry insights, and more.

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Client Name
Village of Waunakee
Client Type
Services Provided
  • Environmental Permitting
  • Trail Design & Planning
Project Manager
Contact Mike Calkins, PE
Business Unit Leader

Brownfield Site Transformed into New Library

Local children participate in a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Waunakee Public Library on April 21. Photo Credit: Vogel Bros. Building Co.

The new Waunakee Public Library is a 40,000-square-foot building was designed by OPN with Snyder & Associates handling the site & utility design, stormwater management, multi-use trail, pedestrian bridge, and project permitting. Significant challenges were associated with this project including soil contamination, the presence of endangered species, high groundwater, multiple permitting agencies, and a mapped environmental corridor.

As part of the site design, a 12-foot wide, 900-foot-long paved trail connection from Pleasant Drive to Madison Street in the Village of Waunakee was located just south of the new library. It will double as a fire lane for the area and follow Six Mile Creek. A pedestrian bridge connection was also included allowing patrons to cross Six Mile Creek for access to additional parking.

The Village of Waunakee has been planning for a new library since 2008. After a site search, the village decided on an old foundry site near downtown. In addition to the new library building, the community wanted to promote active transportation and connectivity. To facilitate this, we incorporated the trail and pedestrian bridge into the site design.

Key Achievements

  • Navigated multiple reviewing agencies and permits with long lead times. Finished the design on time with the layout the client desired.
  • Designed the site and trail with less than 10,000 square feet of wetland fill, enabling the project to achieve a general wetland fill permit that was less costly and timely for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) permitting process.
  • Site and trail design incorporated the necessary cap required by the WDNR for leaving contaminated soils on-site, which avoided exuberate fees for removing contaminated soil.
  • Designed the site and trail outside of the floodplain line to avoid lengthy FEMA approvals.
  • Incorporated the site and trail design with a 90-foot span pedestrian bridge across Six Mile Creek for access to parking on the south side.