This week, Phase 1 demolition began in earnest! To break down the work being done, the building has been divided into 8 sections (A through H). Phase 1 will include sections D, E, F, G, and H (See the image below to learn which parts of the building are included). This phase will be completed by the Fall of 2021, and then work will begin on Phase 2, which is comprised of sections A, B, and C.
Phase 1 construction is underway! This is very exciting and it also means that getting around the Ballfield Road campus has changed. When you walk, cycle, or drive to the school, you’ll notice more green stormwater barriers and more fencing. The school is situated in the middle of wetlands and the barriers are there to protect the stream and wetlands from construction debris. We ask for your help in keeping these barriers intact both to protect our water andtohelp us avoid the expense of replacing broken barriers. Thank you for your patience!
Click here to see the “look-ahead” construction schedule and here for the budget update from the last SBC meeting.
Yesterday, 282 registered voters came together under a huge tent on a brilliant June morning for Town Meeting. The SBC is grateful to the community for approving the additional funds for the project – we know it was not an easy decision, and the show of support for the warrant article was very much appreciated!
After Town Meeting was over (only 90 minutes!), members of the SBC, the School Committee, other boards and committees, and our project team marked the official start of construction with some photos on the center field. We thank the representatives from SMMA, Daedalus, and Consigli for attending Town Meeting and supplying us with nifty hard hats and ceremonial shovels. We’re also grateful to Tyler Ory for his excellent drone photography – if we weren’t wearing masks, there would more than one photo of everyone gaping as it flew overhead!
Most importantly, we thank all of you. It has taken a lot of engagement and support from residents to get us to this point. We look forward to sharing the project’s progress as it unfolds!
SBC Meeting on Wednesday, 7:00pm, via Zoom
Link to meeting will be posted with the agenda on Monday. Agendas and minutes can be found here.
You DO NOT need to have a Facebook account. Just click the link below on Saturday morning (9:30am). REMEMBER, you may watch remotely, but there is no way to ask questions or vote remotely (per state law).
Annual Town Meeting page of the Town website – includes additional presentations and materials from the Finance Committee, Capital Planning Committee, Community Preservation Committee, School Building Committee, and Water Commission
Take a virtual tour of the school!
Lincoln Middle School Principal, Sharon Hobbs, created a video documenting each room of the school as it currently looks. It’s about 40 minutes long, and the 1st half features the Smith School and the 2nd half Brooks. It will be fun to compare the “before and after” in 2 years’ time. Thank you, Sharon!
The elementary school has been moved into the temporary classrooms
The middle school has moved into the Smith end of the building
Over the past 18 months, the SBC has gone through several rounds of lengthy and difficult decision-making to cut costs and keep the project on budget. At each step we used our core project values to make tough choices, and through the 90% construction document phase, we were able to make cuts without impinging on those values too much.
The last round was different.
In December, the project went out to bid and the marketplace got to have its say. Now we saw the impact of a combining a complex, phased renovation with a hot construction market and changing trade policy. The bids came in $3.5M over budget. So…we rolled up our sleeves once again – February was rough! Cutting $3.5 million out of the project meant that the SBC, for the first time, needed to eliminate parts of the project that we had tried really hard to protect. Parts of the project that represent our collective community values. Values identified after years of community conversation and collaboration.
As a result, we are asking residents to approve using $829K from Free Cash to restore 8 items (below).
To quote Chris Fasciano, SBC Chair, “…the SBC is acutely aware of the pressure of the current [COVID and financial] situation and we have given this request a lot of thought. In the end, we feel the responsibility of delivering a school project that has the most long-term value for our investment. We don’t want to look back in five years and regret that we didn’t present the community with a choice about whether or not to include these pieces of the project.”
Town Meeting is on Saturday, June 13th at 9:30am in the Hartwell parking lot.
Because of COVID-19, this year’s Town Meeting is going to be set up quite a bit differently from usual. For starters, it will be outside! Also, it will be focused entirely on the Town’s budget and other financial warrants, one of which is the SBC’s request to use $829K from Free Cash to add 8 items back into the project. Another change is that all of the slide presentations are being done ahead of time and posted on the Town Meeting page of the Town’s website. In addition, boards and committees (including the SBC on June 4th and June 8th!) are holding virtual public meetings/forums to give residents the opportunity to ask questions. Here is a list of all the virtual meetings:
To get a sense of what to expect the morning of Town Meeting, below are two maps showing the set up for the day. Public Safety, Parks & Recreation, the Moderator, Selectmen, Board of Health, and Lincoln’s administrative team are all working together to finalize the logistics. Please join the Town Meeting Overview/BOS Listening Session via Zoom on June 12th to learn more and ask questions!
Faculty and staff have been very busy packing up the school! Grades K-4 are getting ready to move into the temporary school and grades 5-8 will move into Smith. On June 8th Brooks will be turned over to Consigli and will officially become a construction site. Between now and then, there is a lot going on. For those who like the details, click here for the 4-week look-ahead schedule.
Town Meeting is Saturday, June 13th, 9:30am, Hartwell Parking Lot
In March, the SBC had planned to request up to ~$2M to restore items to the project that were eliminated when the construction bids came in $3.5M over the final estimates. Because Town Meeting was postponed due to COVID-19 and with the revised guidance of the Finance Committee, the SBC took another look at the proposed list of items and has reduced its request to $829K. Originally, there were 19 items on the list, one of which was restored to the project through negotiations with a subcontractor (yippee!) The SBC looked at the remaining 18 and asked the following questions: 1) What is the decision deadline for the item? 2) Can the item be added at a later date? 3) If it can be added, what is the potential cost impact? Below are two charts that summarize that analysis.
Almost two years to the day after residents came together to choose option “L3” at the Special Town Meeting, the renovation of the Lincoln School will begin! What can we expect to see? (Click here for a reminder of the overall timeline.)
Construction fencing will start to go up around the Brooks end of the building
Top-soil will be stockpiled
Interior demolition and abatement will begin
Utility work will begin
Prepping for (potential) June 13th Town Meeting
The Town is planning for a June 13th Town Meeting and a June 15th Town Election. We are waiting to see what the Governor says within the next 24 hours, but given the necessary logistics and mandatory deadlines, committees were asked to prepare.
The SBC met with the Finance Committee last Monday to get an update on the current thinking about the Town budget and to understand the impact of the pandemic.
At its meeting last Wednesday, the SBC voted unanimously to ask the School Committee to ask the Board of Selectmen to place an article on the new Warrant.
All the members of the SBC are sensitive to the current financial climate and, at the same time, trying to keep an eye on the long-term value of the renovation project.
The SBC re-examined the $2M+ list of items it had originally planned to present to the Town in March using the following criteria: 1)What is the “decide by” date for the item? 2)Is it possible to add the item to the project at a later date? 3)What is the cost impact of doing the work in the future?
Based on those criteria, the SBC plans to present a list of items totaling $629K and, in addition, a request for $200K for furniture, fixtures, technology, and equipment (FF&E).
The SBC will meet with the Finance Committee on Tuesday, May 19th at 8:00pm.
The next SBC meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, May 20th at 7:00pm.