School property for road connecting Springwater, Maple

Wenatchee School District’s 70-acre property (bordered in green) includes the path for a road (in yellow) along the base of the hill that would extend Springwater Avenue toward Maple Street. 

WENATCHEE — The city now has a price, if not a signed purchase-and-sale agreement, for the strip land 60 feet wide and 1,500 feet long destined to become an extension of Springwater Avenue in the next few years.

The Wenatchee School Board was set to agree on the $140,000 sale Tuesday, but details about who is responsible for the maintenance of a stormwater infiltration pond were not included in the packet, so the final vote was delayed until next week’s meeting. The 50-by-40-foot retention pond would be built on district-owned property, but maintained by the city.

The board agreed to sell the property for the road last year. Negotiating the price was one of the items placed on Superintendent Paul Gordon’s to-do list when he started the job in July.

The strip of land follows an already established PUD water line easement along the base of a hill on the district-owned 70.1-acre property west of the WSU Tree Fruit Research Center, bordering Springwater Avenue. The district purchased the property in 2003 as a potential future school site. The eastern half of the property, split by the irrigation canal, is relatively flat and buildable. The western half, or much of it, is a steep hillside.

The city initially requested the school district sell property for the road along with a 5-acre bench of buildable land between the proposed road and the hillside.

Construction of the road is part of the city’s long-term plan to provide added access to homes in the foothills and is one of the access requirements for a 167-acre, 384-lot housing development proposed on adjacent property to the north. The plan, said Wenatchee Public Works Director Rob Jammerman, is for the city to purchase the right-of-way for the road.

The developer of the Triad Subdivision would pay for the construction of the road, both the Springwater extension across the school district property and the improvements to Maple Street, which would be the entrance to the development. The construction of the Springwater extension would not be required until the first 100 homes in the subdivision are completed. The proposed development schedule anticipates those to be ready by 2022. Details are still being worked out between the city and the developer.

The city’s initial request for the district to also sell about 5 acres of property between the proposed road and the hillside would have helped the developer offset road construction costs, said city officials. The school board declined.

The property appraisal presented Tuesday, which established the $140,000 value for 2.3 acres that will be used for the road, also noted that the hillside the city had proposed for a park project is buildable. Part of the city’s argument for turning it into a park was that it couldn’t be used for anything else.

“I find that interesting,” said school board President Laura Jaecks.

The appraisal lists the remaining school property value at about $2.86 million.

The next board meeting is at 4 p.m. Tuesday. For details, go to the district website.