Show All Answers
The Total Project Budget is currently estimated at $343,399,220. This includes bricks & mortar, site work, demolition, and soft costs such as design fees, permit fees, utility company fees, testing, FF&E, Technology, Contingencies, etc.
The School Building Committee will be working with the OPM and Design Team to ensure the most cost-effective building is delivered to our community.
The Total Project Budget is currently estimated at $343,399,220. The City of Lowell will be asked to appropriate the entire amount, with MSBA providing up to $215,992,406 in reimbursement of eligible cost.
The City Council and the SBC working with our Owner’s Project Manager, Skanska, along with the City’s financial team and construction supervisors, will all work to assure the appropriate expenditure of funds consistent with the procurement and accounting laws as mandated by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the Lowell Public Schools. The City Council and the SBC, as part of the process since day one, has worked diligently to assure that the final product will be the best possible value for the Lowell Public Schools in every aspect. We believe that upon completion of this process, the final accounting will demonstrate that we received a great product at a great value.
There are a number of factors that will determine the ongoing maintenance and operations of the new school. In terms of operating costs, the building will be designed to meet or exceed the standard set forth by LEED. This means that the energy efficiency of the design will be at a minimum of 25-30% greater than the standards required by the current state building code. This added efficiency will allow for greater energy savings and will help maintain operating costs. The SBC believes that the new school will be vastly more efficient to operate than the current building and will provide for more consistent cost control due to its design, green technologies, and efficiencies. When determining future operating costs and maintenance costs of the new school one must consider the efficiencies that will be realized in the new school vs. current expenditures to operate and maintain the existing school. Once the calculations of operating and maintenance of the new building are compared with the cost of the old building we believe the net result will be a better value for the Lowell School District (added technology will result in higher electrical costs).
The new building will immediately impact how teachers are able to deliver instruction because they will have access to the most up-to-date equipment and 21st century technology. For example:
The new and fully renovated buildings will afford us the opportunity to flexibly group students which has been shown in research enhance learning. All of our teachers will have access to spaces that are both large and small, enabling them to combine with other classes for interdisciplinary instruction or to split a class in order to work with smaller groups of students who may be in need of remediation or enrichment.
The cluster configuration of the classrooms and location of teacher work-spaces invites enrichment and collaboration. Teachers of English/Language Arts, Social Studies, World Languages, and the arts will be clustered together into a Culture & Humanities pod. Likewise, science, math, business technology, and engineering classrooms will be located adjacent to each other in a STEM pod. So, in the new building the physics and calculus teacher could be sharing an office and if the math teacher needs a “real life” example of a calculus function, the physics teacher is just a conversation away! In our current building, teachers may go weeks without seeing each other because of the size of the building alone.
The Library/Media Center be housed in a historically restored dance hall in Coburn Building. Here students will have access to the space and resources necessary for small groups of students to complete projects and other forms of hands-on assessment without disturbing others. Likewise, for students in need of remediation or support, the new Academic Support Centers will have flexible grouping spaces, study corrals, and dedicated technology.
Initially the Program of Studies will remain relatively the same, although the new building will allow us to update the programs that we have into the 21st century. For example, the new construction will enhance our existing engineering program by providing an up-to-date fabrication space that will allow students to design, build and test prototypes.
The project will be constructed in four (4) phases with some intermediate milestones. Phase 1 will be the demolition of the adjacent property (75 Arcand Dr.), as well as construction of the new gymnasium building, and cafeteria. Phase 2 will be the partial demolition, and rebuilding of the back third of the 1980s building, reconstruction of the south bridge, and construction of the new freshman academy. Phase 3 will consist of renovation of the remaining two thirds of the 1980s building, construction of the new north bridge, and renovation of the north portion of the 1922 building. The final phase, Phase 4, will consist of renovation of the south portion of the 1922 building, as well as renovation of the 1890s building. School will remain in full session throughout these phases. There will be some inconveniences and/or disruptions on the High School campus to include items such as: traffic flow, parking, and underground utilities.
Yes. Business Marketing and Finance.
The Lowell High School facilities are comprised of multiple buildings located on a few city blocks crossing a canal in the Downtown neighborhood. The original 1892 building was added to in 1922 and renovated in 1971 and 1997 (minor), and included a large interior light well at the intersection of the two brick buildings. The 1980 facility is made up of an educational wing and a field house wing connected by lobby spaces and circulation, and was renovated in 1997. These two buildings, the 1892/1922 and the 1980, are connected by two enclosed, glazed bridges which span across the canal and park below. The Freshman Academy, a completely separate structure, is one city block away. Built in 1900 and added on in 1939, it was renovated in 1986. Ninth grade students typically walk along a less dense urban street to access specialty classrooms and the physical education spaces in the main buildings. The Freshman Academy structure also houses their own cafeteria and theater. The Steam Plant, original construction unknown, but renovated in 1996, which serves the entire complex, is located between the Freshman Academy and the 1920 facility, and is connected to the Freshman Academy above ground by overhead pipes and to the 1920 Building with a utilities tunnel under Kirk Street.
With the current overcrowding conditions -- which has intensified the problematic issues with the existing conditions of the buildings related to maintenance, building systems and other larger capital projects -- and the magnitude of the future enrollment projections, and the changing methodologies and space needs necessary to meet 21st century teaching and learning standards, there is a significant shortfall in appropriate space in the high school for meeting the Education Program. Coupled with this is the desire to bring special needs students and their associated programs, back into this school for a better educational environment for the students and teachers. Currently, many special needs students are displaced for partial semesters to one of the alternative or day schools in the city, and are brought back into the mainstream at different intervals throughout the year. This disrupts the educational experience for all the students and contributes to additional and sometimes unplanned overcrowding in classrooms throughout the school year. Additions to this school should include much needed special needs spaces and programs. The district desires to have 21st century-style, flexible spaces for the development of critical thinking, creative problem solving, independent learning, and student and teacher collaboration at the high school. This facility is obsolete and not conducive to 21st century teaching and learning methodologies.
Anticipated 2026 occupancy.
The proposed new building is being designed for 3,520 students. This is based on current and projected enrollment figures in accordance with MSBA guidelines.
The total square footage is 622,777 square feet.
Safety is paramount and a top priority for all individuals: (students, staff, visitors, construction workers, etc.). There will be separation between school and construction operations by way of temporary walls, fencing, driveways, barricades and similar. During renovation phases, construction sections will be separated from the school via fire rated partition walls. Construction personnel while working on site will be required to be CORI Approved (Criminal Offender Record Information). The project team will continue to communication with School Administration, Parents, Police, Fire, Code Enforcement and other City Agencies for their input.
The design of the new school incorporates an integrated security “system.” This new security system is significantly more advanced than the one that currently exists in the school. It will allow for easy identification of all personnel and visitors, more efficient use of video monitoring, integrated alarm systems, and electronic access control, while maintaining a healthy, vibrant, and exciting environment for learning.
Per current Building and Energy Codes, the new building must be highly energy efficient. The project will also be “LEED Silver Certified” (http://www.usgbc.org/leed); enabling the district to receive an additional reimbursement on eligible project costs from MSBA.
The students will see minimal disruption during the first phase of the project. During the remaining three phases, students will be separated thoroughly from construction through the erection of temporary walls and fences. Some of their routes from sections of the building may be detoured, and will contain signage along the routes to ensure the students know safe areas to travel.
Yes, but impacts will vary based on Phase. Phase 1 will have little to no drop-off and pickup changes. Phase 2 will have the Main entrance and drop off temporarily relocated further down Fr. Morissette Blvd. to the North end of the 1980’s building. Phase 3 will require revisions to drop off and pickup on French and Kirk Streets. Phase 4 will have revisions to drop off and pick up on Kirk Street.
The Project Team in concert with the school administration has analyzed the current space requirements and established a system to maintain those requirements through each phase of the project through the use of the current Freshman Academy Building, additional land at 75 Arcand Drive and increasing operational efficiency.
There are several approaches to noise mitigation in order to maintain an appropriate educational environment.