It seems that the old Incline Village Elementary School lot has found a permanent purpose. The structure, originally constructed in 1964, was used as a K-6 school until 2003, and then as a K-2 school through 2010. After that point, all students attended the newer Incline Elementary School. The old building sat mostly vacant for a decade and residents have been wondering about the fate of the site.

In ensuing years, the Washoe County School District, owner of the site, met with community members and agency representatives in the region to understand what would be most useful to the Incline Village community in place of the school. Discussions with property developers led to such ideas as workforce housing and commercial options.

The Incline Village General Improvement District was courted most prominently, and ideas from that relationship yielded possible soccer fields, a dog park, bocce ball courts, picnic areas, and a playground structure. However, in February 2019, the IVGID broke off negotiations for the $2 million acquisition.

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The Tahoe Transportation District, which facilitates and implements multi-modal transportation projects around the Basin, expressed interest and the school board of trustees approved the purchase price of $2.35 million on Sept. 22.

Carl Hasty, district manager with the TTD, explains what the next steps for the property will be:

The Tahoe Transportation District has been interested in the site since 2012 when it began to seasonally use it as a public transit service anchor for the summer shuttle to Sand Harbor State Park. This service was implemented to help alleviate the traffic conditions on State Route 28 during the summer season, and to work in conjunction with the recently completed trailhead parking and the shared-use path from the old Ponderosa Ranch site to Sand Harbor.

TTD’s long-range transit master plan calls for the creation of a series of what are known in transportation terms as mobility hubs in communities around the lake, and eventually in areas outside of the Tahoe Basin. A mobility hub concept is intended to provide access to transit and other modes of travel including walking, biking, as well as auto. Such a hub can also be built to integrate with the community in which it is located. The Incline site provides a great opportunity for that. A number of other needs have been expressed that could be compatible with a transit function. Ideas heard to date include a play park for children, a dog park, affordable workforce housing, boat parking, and overflow parking. Undoubtedly, there are others.

To explore those ideas and to arrive at a design concept that can satisfy transit system and multi-modal goals as well as other potential community amenities, TTD is planning a public input and design idea process to begin sometime after the first of next year. TTD will be reaching out to the community in the near future to set up meeting dates and venues, or, given the social distancing needs, other means of connecting and communicating ideas.

~ Carl Hasty, TTD manager

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