Because of their proximity to Joplin, Missouri; USD 247 was all too aware of the devastation a tornado can bring. Determined to have a safe place for their elementary students, there will be a new addition to the Southeast Elementary school campus when students return to school beginning in the Fall of 2015, a recently completed 1,886 square foot tornado shelter/saferoom. This shelter will also be open to the public during tornado emergencies and is the only public tornado shelter in the city of Weir.
Built to FEMA 361 and NSSA ICC 500 standards this structure will be utilized as a music classroom as well as a multi-purpose room when not needed as a shelter. ADA compliant bathrooms, drop ceilings and tile floors make the space feel comfortable and inviting; more classroom than the traditional, cold concrete bunker of the past; a calming, familiar space for students, faculty and community members alike when faced with a tornado emergency.