Dore & Whittier School consolidation plans & costs heading to MSBA August 1, 2019

 

On July 18, 2019 the architectural firm, Dore & Whittier, was slated to reveal associated rough costs on new school(s) buildings– such as construction costs, swing space costs, and eligible reimbursables– with the School Building Committee. (See summary of City Council requests July 9, 2019 here.) The meetings are public. Associated costs were not transparent for the public. Instead a dollar sign rating system was illlustrated pictorially, like so:

Slide 9 comparative costs 14 options_East Gloucester consolidation costs by Dore & Whittier and School Committee July 18 2019 Gloucester MA (11)

Why were rough estimate details cut from the presentation? A few reasons were provided, namely “MSBA does not look kindly” on public disclosure because

  • The MSBA aims to have the best possible build based on educational needs and goals rather than cost. Publishing amounts can taint the bidding or decision making.
  • The public may be too attached to numbers they hear and/or be confused because of the (lengthy) timeline. By the time shovels hit the dirt the final bids will be different.

Other districts post all associated costs, why not Gloucester? Why are the design/build firms awarded these contracts charged with bidding out the cost evaluations on projects, especially ones greater than 5 million?  Why assume this process is the only way to go about it?

Michele Rogers with Dore & Whittier announced that there were “no surprises” following review of the cost estimate comparisons. “Eliminations were easy; the most expensive were eliminated.” She concluded that this presentation was the second and final per their contract for services related to this Feasibility Study Phase. [This one feasibility study phase contract total cost is: $569,075  ($284,296 for the feasibility study and $275,704 for the future schematic design. One environmental study add on is $9075). Requests for a breakdown of all studies and plans related to new schools–at least since 2012– have gone unanswered by the school committee and architectural firm.]

The next step is to compile and deliver submission to the MSBA, the state agency tasked with reviewing Gloucester’s application for new schools.

Q. Next steps? “Submittal allows us to do geotechnical site evaluation and other necessary investigations (like traffic and environmental studies), and more design. Submittal helps us narrow down and leave behind areas we won’t bother with as we know…We’ll need to tighten the building design and handle specialized pieces. We’ll proceed from 9 options to 6 very quickly. ”

Q. What is the submission? “It’s a thick binder, maybe 10- inches thick, with all our reports to date, the educational program narrative, the space summaries approved earlier, etc.” Will the MSBA require a presentation? “No. The MSBA will review the binders within a two week turn around; then we have a two week turn around to respond.” Dunn commented to make sure the City see that. The MSBA will decide on November 13th or November 20th whether to make a recommendation to allow this proposal to proceed to the next phase: schematic  design. “Or they’ll push back and request more information.” The MSBA “will not require more work on many options as the scoring was so low. They’ll be concentrating on the top 3 or 4 options.”

Tom Ellis was present related to a staff change; Roger who managed the design phase is moving out of state so the team for Gloucester will need to be reorganized. They met with MSBA July 17, 2019 to discuss this change. (Was someone from the city at the meeting?) Chris Tremblay will be assisting. “MSBA doesn’t like surprises,” Ellis remarked.

Who does?

The costs and application should be public before it’s forwarded to the state. Chairman Jonathan Pope said he’d forward the pricing.

Presentation

Double click on pictures to enlarge the slides for the “East Gloucester Elementary School Building Committee 7.18.19″. Color coding continues as in yellow = East Gloucester; Blue = Vets; and Green = Green Street area.

And the winner (high scoring) is…

one location at Vets and both at Green

slide 13_scoring finalists_East Gloucester consolidation costs by Dore & Whittier and School Committee July 18 2019 Gloucester MA (16)
slide 13- scoring on final 9 for state

 

REVISED SCHEDULE

“By October we’ll be back on schedule. Yes, MSBA has seen the schedule and is pleased.”

slide 16 _TIMELINE NOW_East Gloucester consolidation costs by Dore & Whittier and School Committee July 18 2019 Gloucester MA (1)
slide 16 revised timeline expectations

 

Reminder! Community meeting July 25 6:30 PM

Fraternity Club Gloucester, Ma

Fraternity Club.jpg

How did we get here?

Catch up posts, documents, links related to Gloucester’s school committee new school buildings/consolidation process: Continue reading “Dore & Whittier School consolidation plans & costs heading to MSBA August 1, 2019”

New schools, big schools, small schools, where? July 25 6:30 PM Fraternity Club #GloucesterMA (Dore & Whittier costs reveal tonight 5pm)

Fraternity Club.jpgSAVE THE DATE

July 25, 2019 6:30PM

And when! “Light Up Mattos has rented the Fraternity Club, 27 Webster Street, Gloucester, MA, for a Listening Post on July 25th, 2019 at 6:30 to talk about the possibilities of a 440 student population in Mattos field area, Green Street and East Gloucester school. Together we can ask questions of each other and really see what we all think of having such a large population of students, and perhaps find new ideas, too. Please come and be heard and listen. Together we can make a difference. We will be looking for volunteers to put information flyers in neighbors doors in Mattos field area, Green Street area, West Parish area and East Gloucester area to get the word out. Proposed schools affects us all!” – Light Up Mattos

Gloucester schools | Elementary: East Gloucester, Veterans Memorial, West Parish, Beeman, and Plum Cove; Middle: O’Maley and fields; High School: GHS and fieldhouse

UPCOMING DORE & WHITTIER presentations for NEW SCHOOL(S) AND LIBRARY:

The next new school meeting is TONIGHT- July 18, 2019. Associated costs for limited options slated to be revealed. Goal for submission to the state agency, MSBA, is August 1, 2019. Meeting held in the School admin offices at Blackburn. 5pm.

Catch up on new school building process in these prior posts:

  • July 25, 2019 public community discussion all welcome! Fraternity club 6:30PM
  • July 18, 2019 Dore & Whittier slated to reveal associated rough costs on new builds/construction costs/swing space costs, and eligible reimbursables, for presentation to school committee (no public comment) 5PM
  • July 9, 2019 Dore & Whittier Presentation to City Council (no public comment) scenes (this post) and link to 1623 Studios/Cape Ann TV taping of City Council meeting July 9, 2019 here questions from city councilors following presentation begin at 27:57 minutes
School Committee Dore & Whittier presentation to full City Council July 9 2019 City Hall Kyrouz Auditorium Gloucester MA ©c ryan (6)
City Council meeting July 9, 2019 included presentation by Dore & Whittier for school committee new building options. Chair reminded audience that this meeting was not a public forum and no costs, final sites or options. There was quite a turn out.

 

Oral Communications july 9, 2019:

“Joseph S. Mattos Jr. grew up right up the street from Mattos field at 9 Linnett Place. He came from a patriotic family and chose the Army for his love of animals. Mattos field was dedicated to Joseph in 1935 and was rededicated last October 5th. the 100th. anniversary of his death.  Lt. Maxwell Parsons grew up at 65 Mt. Pleasant Ave. Lt. Maxwell served in the U.S. Army. Lt. Maxwell Parsons Playground was erected by the Gloucester Playground Commission in 1935   Ganine Nancy Doucette grew up at 19 Mt. Vernon St. The Park was dedicated in 1986 in her memory. Mr. John Gus Foote was instrumental in the dedication. Private First Class Doucette wanted to serve her country and almost could not. She died serving her country as she wished.   I am their voice as they have none. I am here today to speak for them all.   Please don’t take their dedicated open space.  Thank you. Patti Amaral”

  • Mattos family letter to the editor HERE Save-Mattos-Field 
  • July 8, 2019 GDT article by Ray Lamont announcing presentation of 9 options to City Council noting that still nothing is final and no costs or reimbursement  details will be available HERE
  • June 26, 2019 School Commitee votes to accept options 1623 Studio (Cape Ann TV) taping HERE questions begin following Dore & Whittier presentation and prior to vote at 1:05 into taping (Joel Favazza, etc,”sounding the alarm about these sites but continually told hold on calm down this is not the time to ask” and now we’re at final options no discussions. “Foreclosing opportunity (for alternatives etc) despite telling community for months there would be chance.” He mentions 12-15 months but the questions about the sites and process go back well before 2015; see selected roundup below)
  • June 20, 2019 School Building Committee votes to accept 9 options to present to school committee (no public comment) HERE 
  • June 20, 2019 Scenes and recap of new building plans presentation June 17 including full text of readings by Patti Amaral and Mary Ann Boucher  also reminder that school building committee to vote on this day for the options to push forward
  • June 17, 2019 Reminder notice of Councilor Memhard Ward meeting about new schools (open to public comments) HERE

“A round up of Pros and Cons related to the recent West Parish construction and its use and operating costs since being built might be helpful. Some West Parish feedback that made the news ranged from small inconveniences (no dishwasher) to larger concerns about design (despite ample site the gymnasium was not designed with enough space for spectators, the design of the parking lot did not take into account ease in snowplowing and numerous vehicular/traffic snafus).  There was no discussion about these proposals within a broader context of all the school properties, all the elementary schools, merging with Rockport, what happens with development of the older sites if Schoolhouse Road option is undertaken, etc.” Big built out schools haven’t demonstrated a reduction in operating costs.  The state is considering policy for livable, innovative, green and walkable communities. You can’t alter special places, build mega schools that everybody needs to drive to, and have walkable, quintessential New England neighborhoods and green communities. Can we request a modified incentive to best match our geography and green goals?

  • Spring 2019, School building committee website set up spring 2019 https://eastgloucesterbuildingproject.weebly.com.
  • October 2018 GMG post MSBA school committee school consolidation update HERE 
  • October 2017 City Begins Quest for new Merged School: Search on for funding for East Gloucester-Veterans study, Gloucester Daily Times article by Ray Lamont HERE
  • In February 2017, the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA), a state agency, moved the Gloucester school consolidation proposal further along in its funding process. The MSBA cost page is here where you will find information and data about schools built either a)2008-2013  or b) 2014-current.  West Parish is in there. (List of MSBA projects completed for Gloucester) MSBA splits out designer and project management phases from the final build which means you have to go back and forth between documents. Expected life span for new buildings is 40 years.
  • September 27, 2016, GMG post, Ward 1 Community Discussion about new elementary schools at East Gloucester Elementary School HERE
  • September 14, 2016 GMG post school consolidation meeting  at West Parish HERE
  • HERE’S A LINK TO THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PLAN PROPOSAL AUGUST 2016
  • January 2015 joint City Council/School Committee meeting; presentation by Dore & Whittier HERE Option A Maintain all four buildings as they are with same number of classes per grade; Option B Make additions and renovations at all four schools; Option C Remove Plum Cove or Veterans and make additions and renovations at other three (2-3 classes per grade); Option D Remove Plum Cove and Veterans and make addition at Beeman (4 classes per grade), with 3 classes per grade at East Gloucester

The next Sawyer Free new building meeting (also Dore & Whittier)

folds into the Trustees meeting 7/23/19 and specifically capital projects Wed 7/24/19 8:30AM.

 

 

School building committee votes to pursue 9 Dore & Whittier building options and timeline

On Thursday, June 20, 2019, the school building committee voted to pursue 9 school options at 3 sites recommended by Dore & Whittier (whittled down from 14 presented on June 13), and the timeline. The School Committee is meeting on the 26th to present this slate.

courtesy photos- “green” indicates the options pushing ahead

 

  • upcoming July 12, 2019 review costs / goal PDP submission to MSBA August 2019
  • upcoming July 9, 2019 presentation to city council (without costs)
  • upcoming June 26, 2019  presentation to full school committee (without costs)
  • Thursday June 20, 2019 architect presentation to building committee (this post)
  • Monday, June 17, 2019 public meeting at City Hall recap here
  • Thursday, June 13, 2019 architect presentation of 14 options at 3 sites to school building committe recap here  also helpful links

 

 

 

REMINDER tonight 6pm City Hall meeting about school plans for East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Gloucester, MA

TONIGHT June 17, 2019 Ward 1 City Councilor Scott Memhard will host another Ward 1 Community Meeting and update on the East Gloucester Elementary School building project from 6 to 8 p.m., at Gloucester City Hall’s Kyrouz Auditorium.

The agenda will include a presentation and Q&A with members of the Gloucester School Committee, the EGS School Building Committee, and our EGS designer/project manager Dore & Whittier Architects. Time allowing, any other community concerns or matters of Ward 1 interest may also be raised & discussed.

Catch up on plans (with building committee’s link added today to last week’s June 13 presentation- note Green Street changes)

Dore & Whittier presented options for new elementary schools (specifically related to consolidation of East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Schools or just East Gloucester) to the EGS Building Committee Thursday, June 13th at 5 pm.  This meeting was not a public forum. However, all present reiterated that questions and concerns are most welcome at the Ward 1 Community Meeting June 17, 2019 at City Hall (details below).

Potential options for three sites were color coded for review

  • YELLOW for East Gloucester School Site
  • BLUE for Veterans Memorial School Site
  • GREEN for Schoolhouse Road Site formerly labeled “Green Street” site

Continue reading “REMINDER tonight 6pm City Hall meeting about school plans for East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Gloucester, MA”

New school plans Dore & Whittier site options for East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Gloucester, MA

Dore & Whittier presented options for new elementary schools (specifically related to consolidation of East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Schools or just East Gloucester) to the EGS Building Committee Thursday, June 13th at 5 pm.  This meeting was not a public forum. However, all present reiterated that questions and concerns are most welcome at the Ward 1 Community Meeting June 17, 2019 at City Hall (details below).

Potential options for three sites were color coded for review

  • YELLOW for East Gloucester School Site
  • BLUE for Veterans Memorial School Site
  • GREEN for Schoolhouse Road Site formerly labeled “Green Street” site

School Committee Chairman John Pope and Brad Dore of Dore & Whittier stressed that none of these plans are final. “It’s a long process. MSBA requires options. So these 14 options will be whittled down to 8 options that must go foward. Hopefully by next April, after due diligence and consideration, we’ll move forward to the next phase.” Costs are not factored for any of these options at this point in this process so as to base school design on best fit learning requirement rather than price (see “Matrix” slide). Sub committee will vote on the criteria (see “schedule” slide). Dore & Whittier consulting related to this phase is about $70,000. “These options are diagrammatic. None prove that they can be successful or can move ahead, only that they go to the next level of review. They are just a level of screening. The process is iterative.”

For all three sites, plans focused on parking for staff and visitors without addressing neighborhood traffic impact. All proposals tried to take into account access to community spaces (ie. gym and media center) after hours, parent pick up/drop off, and separation of outdoor space and service access. MSBA guidelines suggest 80 parking spaces per 220 students and 117 per 440 students. “Typically these projects find relief granted for parking and zoning,” said Dore. While new schools are built, students will need to be relocated. Chairman Pope said they’d need to press city on options.

A round up of Pros and Cons related to the recent West Parish construction and its use and operating costs since being built might be helpful. Some West Parish feedback that made the news ranged from small inconveniences (no dishwasher) to larger concerns about design (despite ample site the gymnasium was not designed with enough space for spectators, the design of the parking lot did not take into account ease in snowplowing and numerous vehicular/traffic snafus).  There was no discussion about these proposals within a broader context of all the school properties, all the elementary schools, merging with Rockport, what happens with development of the older sites if Schoolhouse Road option is undertaken, etc.

2 POTENTIAL SITES COLOR CODE _Dore Whittier new school sites and plans presented to School Committee building committee_Gloucester MA_20190613_© cryan

TIMELINE

targeting July 18th for cost reveals

28 TIMELINE Dore and Whittier new school sites and plans presented to School Committee building committee_Gloucester MA_20190613_© cryan (28)

 

 

 

 

 

1)East Gloucester Elementary School Site- 5 options both single school and consolidation

Dore & Whittier ascertained that the school’s field is deeded and there’s no option of building out into that green space. It’s already off to a poor start as “the site is reduced by 2.5 acres.” [See 2016 EGS school consolidiation meeting– we already knew this. Ditto consideration of Espresso’s lot, now sold but was available.] Based on their commentary narration, Dore & Whittier does not seem in favor of this option:

  • “A two story option would have structural problems to consider and cons such as creating darker classrooms on the ground floor.”
  • “It would exceed setback lines.” “Extra permitting”
  • “Storm Water management is difficult.”
  • “Topography is difficult. All rock!”
  • There are just so many noted deficiencies. “Generally compressing into a small site means a LOT more money.”
  • Option B3 Problem as no separation of Delivery and Playtime; stressed again how difficult it is to build two stories. “Will this even get through the fire department even with so many difficult permitting issues? The plans push against lot line and trucks may not get back there.” [ed. so why is this presented as an option?]
  • Option C1 430 students is a 3 story option “will recreate parking on street basically the same as now but worse.”
  • Option D NEW School pushes building back, room for 56 parking spots
    • D1 2 story
    • E1 440 students 3 story options
    • E2 crossing property line either by right or by purchase. Brad Dore explained that decisions of that sort happen at the state level. (I think he meant long/difficult route.)
  • One question from the audience went unanswered and encouraged to attend Ward 1 meeting: “Has neighborhood high impact and infrastructure concerns been considered (water/sewer presumably affected with increase to 440 students)?”

 

 

 

2)Veterans Memorial site- 2 options

Plans here were also categorized as failing. “No doubt there are lots of challenges for this one.” Brad Dore said. “Plans here are tortured.”

  • F1 440 students with 80 parking spaces preserving ball field
  • F2 on the ball field

 

 

 

3)Schoolhouse Road / formerly Green Street Site – 2 options

  • 3 story, 440 students

 

 

 

On Monday, June 17, 2019 Ward 1 City Councilor Scott Memhard will host another Ward 1 Community Meeting and update on the East Gloucester Elementary School building project from 6 to 8 p.m., at Gloucester City Hall’s Kyrouz Auditorium.

The agenda will include a presentation and Q&A with members of the Gloucester School Committee, the EGS School Building Committee, and our EGS designer/project manager Dore & Whittier Architects. Time allowing, any other community concerns or matters of Ward 1 interest may also be raised & discussed.

1 Dore and Whittier new school sites and plans presented to School Committee building committee_Gloucester MA_20190613_© cryan
photo: Residents observe architect proposals for new school plans Gloucester MA June 13 2019 (questions and concerns can be brought to public forum this was just a presentation by Dore & Whittier of current iterations for proposed new school building plans to the School Building Committee)

sampling of documents to bring one up to speed:

January 2015 joint City Council/School Committee meeting; presentation by Dore & Whittier HERE

Option A Maintain all four buildings as they are with same number of classes
per grade
Option B Make additions and renovations at all four schools
Option C Remove Plum Cove or Veterans and make additions and renovations
at other three (2-3 classes per grade)
Option D Remove Plum Cove and Veterans and make addition at Beeman (4
classes per grade), with 3 classes per grade at East Gloucester

September 14, 2016 GMG post school consolidation meeting  at West Parish HERE

September 27, 2016, GMG post, Ward 1 Community Discussion about new elementary schools at East Gloucester Elementary School HERE

In February 2017, the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA), a state agency, moved the Gloucester school consolidation proposal further along in its funding process. The MSBA cost page is here where you will find information and data about schools built either a)2008-2013  or b) 2014-current.  West Parish is in there. (List of MSBA projects completed for Gloucester) MSBA splits out designer and project management phases from the final build which means you have to go back and forth between documents. Expected life span for new buildings is 40 years.

October 2017 City Begins Quest for new Merged School: Search on for funding for East Gloucester-Veterans study, Gloucester Daily Times article by Ray Lamont HERE

October 2018 GMG post MSBA school committee school consolidation update HERE 

Spring 2019, School building committee website set up spring 2019 https://eastgloucesterbuildingproject.weebly.com.

 

Lights! Flyover! Docksiders! Mattos! Let’s play ball! You don’t want to miss Mattos Field rededication celebration Oct. 5

Countdown to Mattos Field rededication day celebration

There’s just six more days till the big event, Friday October 5th, 2018, at 4:30PM, Joseph S. Mattos Jr Memorial Field, Gloucester, Massachusetts. And we’re talking years of community preparation to make it special!

Mattos Field_Sept 14 2018_years of community preparation heading into rededication celebration October 5 2018©catherine ryan.jpg

Celebrate Joseph S. Mattos Jr 

“We have a big day ahead for Joseph S. Mattos Jr. as it is his 100th. anniversary of his death and we are going to dedicate his flag to him on October 5th. 2018. We are dedicating his flag and we are also having a flyover as we raise the flag. A pilot named Rich Little is going to do it with his friends. He runs a charity Flights4CF as his daughter has this disease. The ceremony starts at 4:30 and the program is beautiful. The day will be completed with a softball game with the Softball Buddies special needs team and then food at the Gloucester Fraternity Club up the street as they have donated the hall to us for free. We are very thankful to the city, the  Light Up Mattos Committee, our C.P.A., Lucia Amero and Cape Ann Veterans Services, and everyone who has worked so hard on this field! It’s a big big list! (Here’s a more detailed on published Nov 2017 in the GDT)” -Patti Amaral

Mattos Field before the big day_20180914_©catherine Ryan

image3

 

"Field of Dreams" Community Story of Mattos Field

Patti Amaral writes-

Hello Joey, Here is a wonderful story about Mattos field and local artists I know you will love. Great community effort, thanks for all you do.   Patti Amaral Clean City Initiative

 

Mattos

Field of Dreams

The rock at the top of the hill states: This playground is dedicated to the memory of Joseph S. Mattos Jr. Born Oct. 4, 1899 and killed in action Oct. 5, 1918. Dedicated 1935.
 
During World War I, Joseph S. Mattos Jr. “died with honor in the service of his country”, just one day after his eighteenth birthday.  World War I officially ended just over a month later (11/11/1918)
Joseph S. Mattos Jr. was probably one of the youngest Gloucester men killed in action during WWI.
  The area known as the Joseph Mattos Field or Playground was originally a low-lying natural basin with a brook running through it.  In the 1840s Nathaniel Webster Sr. dammed the brook creating a pond.  In the winter he cut the ice from the pond to supply the fishing fleet.  Around 1900 his son, Nathaniel Webster Jr., sold the business to Cape Pond Ice Co.  In 1924 Cape Pond Ice Co. sold the property to the city for a public recreation area. Ten years later the city built Veterans Memorial School, adjacent to the field.  
For the past 30 years Mattos field has hosted The Cape Ann Women’s Softball League. This year the league started a campaign to raise money for new lights for the field that can cost up to $100,000. The CAWSL “Light up Mattos” field campaign has sponsored several local fundraisers to raise money for the lights.
Two years ago the women painted the bleachers with donations from the Building Center. After searching for a local artist to paint “Mattos Field” on the back of the freshly painted bleachers, in an attempt to brighten up the area, local artist Jason Burroughs stepped up and donated his time to paint the new “Mattos Field” mural. Jason and his friend Enza Dimaio spent last weekend painting the mural. Jason has been part of Cape Ann Art Havens Teen Artist Guild for over a year and a half now, which is led by Executive Director Mat Schetne. Jason has shown his work for the last two summers at the Farmers Market, and his most recent showing on October 1, 2011 called “Wet Paint”. He states,” in some ways my form of art is abstract but at the same time its got an urban feel to it, I pretty much have no boundaries to define my artwork”. Jason attended Veterans Memorial School and played at the field throughout his youth. “Painting the Mattos Field Mural meant a lot to me because when I went to Veterans Memorial School, I always remember the ugly bleachers in the corner of the field that we were not allowed to go near (because of their unkempt condition). I think painting the mural brightened up the bleachers and made it look a lot more inviting. I’m glad to say that I did something for my city.”

Enza Dimaio worked with Jason on the mural too. She is a local girl who played softball for the Raiders at Mattos field for many years. She doesn’t consider herself an artist, but when I saw her down the field helping Jason, I could tell she truly enjoys the work. Enza is happy to be giving back to the local field that she played on in her youth as well.

Two young local residents giving back to their community through what they love to do, Paint.
Patti Amaral
Clean City Initiative

Jason-&-Enza2JasonJason3