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Mayor announces updates for Boston public school facilities as students begin school year

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Mayor Martin J. Walsh last week announced the physical improvements made to Boston Public Schools, overseen by BPS’s Capital & Facilities Management and the City of Boston’s Public Facilities Department. The investments, totaled at over $89 million, are funded primarily through Building a Better Boston, Mayor Walsh’s $1.9 billion five-year capital plan.

“I’m proud to highlight the progress we have made in improving our BostonPublic School buildings as students begin their school year,” said Mayor Walsh. “These improvements reflect the City’s dedication to providing the best resources for Boston’s schools and students.”

Updated school projects include:

Dearborn School

The topping off ceremony held on September 13th marked the completion of the new building’s structural steel. The $73M project is utilizing state grant funds, and will be reimbursed upwards of $37M by the Massachusetts School Building Authority (“MSBA”). The design of the new school is based upon a project-based learning curriculum, with an emphasis on STEM education. There will be a Learning Commons on the ground floor that will include a state-of-the-art library/media center, classrooms and science laboratories that will provide an ideal environment for 21st century Learning.

The project is scheduled to be completed in the winter of 2017/2018, and is the first new school the City of Boston has built in 15 years.

Murphy Schoolyard

This $695,000 renovation of the play space at the Richard J. Murphy K-8 School provides upgrades to an existing play area. The scope of work includes installation of handicap accessible play equipment, fitness stations, and an synthetic turf running field.

This project will provide an inclusive play area that will serve the needs of the Murphy School’s diverse student population. The project is anticipated to be complete in mid-September.

Madison Park Technical Vocational High School (MPTVHS) Welding Room

As part of the Mayor’s Capital Plan, the Public Facilities Department was engaged to renovate the welding shop at Madison Park Technical Vocational High School. This $2 million dollar investment will increase the number of welding booths for students. The additional welding booths will enable concurrent teaching opportunities with related trades and increase opportunities for the MPTVHS student population.

The Public Facilities Department and Madison Park Technical Vocational High School are in discussions with Wentworth Institute of Technology and the Ironworkers Local 7 to explore potential partnerships with MPTVHS regarding the use of this newly renovated space and how Madison Park students can access either of these organizations to grow their career opportunities.

The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016.

In addition to the large-scale projects above, the BPS’s Capital & Facilities Management has also invested over $13.6 million this spring and summer to maintain and improve over two dozen BPS buildings and facilities.

Projects include $1.5 million for improved security, including card key access and security cameras at 18 schools; $450,000 in gym upgrades at Boston Latin Academy as part of the Youth Lead the Change participatory budgeting initiative; $120,000 for rubberized surfaces at three school playgrounds (Mary Lyon, Warren-Prescott and Orchard Gardens).