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Exterior Update

Last Wednesday, while the sun was still up, the SBC spent part of its meeting outside looking at proposed exterior materials in natural light. As a result, the SBC approved 1) a red brick that mimics the brick on the current Smith School; 2) a dark, warm gray accent brick; and 3) a pallet of three cement board colors that will be used on the upper portions of the Auditorium and Reed Gym.

In addition, SMMA presented an updated HVAC plan.

Click here to see the entire slide deck from the meeting.

NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, August 14, 7pm, Hartwell.

Settling into place…

All the modular units are in place, and work in underway to connect them. Each unit contains the halves of two classrooms and half a hallway, so when two get attached, they create two classrooms and a part of a hallway. All the units will be connected so that it is a self-contained K-4 building.

Dates to Note…

Inside & Out

At last week’s meeting, the SBC got a look at the latest refinements to the interior design of the school. The design and color palette will knit together the renovated and new portions of the building. The image above shows the new entry lobby of the school. See how this kind of ceiling looks in real life here, and see other interior images here.

As reported in earlier posts, the SBC went through a Value Engineering (VE) exercise at the end of the 60% Construction Documents Phase to keep the project on budget. The single biggest savings ($500K+) was achieved by replacing the proposed concrete panel system on the upper levels of the Auditorium and Reed with brick. On Wednesday, the SBC reviewed several brick options, and chose a contrasting brick that will complement the accent brick being used on other parts of the building. The 3 photos below show: 1) the current building; 2) the previous concrete panel design; and 3) the new proposal. Click here for the entire slide deck, and here for the monthly project budget report.

Current Auditorium & Reed Gym
Concrete panel system
Current design proposal

The SBC will now meet once per month. The next meeting is on Wednesday, October 16th, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room.

A look forward…and a look back…

From Superintendent McFall: What to expect September 19 – October 10:

Modular Trailer/Temporary School Update

  • The modular classrooms (trailers) that are currently located on the Lincoln campus will begin to be set into place this week to form the temporary school in the configuration that will be used to operate the K-4 school for the 2020 – 2022 school years.
  • There will be 3 additional overnight moves to transport the remaining trailers from Hanscom Air Force Base to the Lincoln campus. These overnight moves will take place on September 24, 25, and 26.
  • As the trailers arrive on site, they will be set in place and anchored to their foundation. Additional work will be carried out to connect utilities and create a temporary parking lot. This initial phase of setting the trailers is expected to be completed by October 10. Additional work on the site and interior of the temporary building will continue through December.

A Brief History of the Project...

From time to time, questions come up about where we are in the process, how much has been decided, or what the decision process has been. The links below follow the journey of the Lincoln School project:

  • 1994 – 2017: Studies that led to the project.
  • March 2017: Town votes to authorize the School Committee to use $750K for the first phase of the current project and to appoint a School Building Committee. Start of Concept Phase.
  • Summer 2017 – June 2018: Concept Phase. The design team & SBC develop a range of project choices that achieve different levels of renovation at a range of costs.
  • June 9, 2018: Special Town Meeting. Residents are given the opportunity to choose between 5 project concepts. After 2 rounds of voting, concept “L3” (a $93.9M major renovation) gets 73% of the vote. L3 is a 75% renovation/25% new construction concept that retains the “L-shape” of the current school, reconfigures/provides new spaces to support the educational program, and determines that the school will be net zero.
  • June 2018 – December 2018: Schematic Design Phase. The L3 concept is developed further in preparation for a December Special Town Meeting to bond the project. The phase ends with cost estimates before the bond vote; SBC goes through a value engineering process to make decisions that keep the project on budget.
  • December 2018: December 1st Special Town Meeting and December 3rd Special Election to bond the project.
  • December 2018 – April 2019: Design Development Phase. Continued work on interior and exterior design and materials, major systems, etc. The phase ends with cost estimates; no value engineering needed.
  • April 2019 – September 2019: 60% Construction Documents Phase. Materials, plumbing and electrical plans, mechanical systems, site work, and phasing plans are refined; design/construction team works with Lincoln Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Historical Commission, and Building Department on required permits. Phase ends with cost estimates; SBC goes through a value engineering process to make decision that keep the project on budget.
  • NOW: September 2019 – December 2019: 90% Construction Documents Phase. Continued refinement of plans and drawings in preparation for sending the project out to bid. Final round of cost estimates will be performed before the bid documents are finalized.
  • SUMMER 2020: Phase 1 begins – renovation of the Middle School (Brooks). Grades K-4 move into the temporary school; grades 5-8 move into the elementary end of the school (Smith)

Next SBC Meeting: Wednesday, September 25th, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room.

  • Review refinements of interior design
  • Review exteriors of Brooks & Reed Gym
  • Review plan for salvaged items
  • Monthly budget update
  • Construction update

On Budget…

After a 3-meeting, 7.5-hour Value Engineering (VE) process, the project remains on budget!

As anyone who’s done a major renovation knows, a construction project is a nearly continuous stream of choices and decisions. Things begin with big decisions like size, scope, and scale, and end with small ones like: Which knobs to put on the cabinets? Each choice has a range of options & tradeoffs, almost always at different budget points (some of us may remember “Good,” “Better” and “Best” rankings in the Sears catalog).

To keep the school on budget, the SBC considered well over 100 items spanning every aspect of the project. For example: Should we have phenolic (composite resin) lockers, as was proposed in the design, or choose metal lockers, which are very durable and less expensive? The SBC made the choice to go with metal hallway lockers, which is a good alternative and saved $134,550. Making these kinds of choices allowed the committee to ensure that the project is entirely within budget. To see the slides that accompanied the discussion, click here.

The Modulars are Arriving!

Late-night arrival of the first modular units!

How is the project a learning opportunity? Check out this drawing by a Lincoln School 1st grade student who was very proud of his drawing because he “used real shapes.”

First-Hand Scientific Observation + Geometry + Drawing + Writing + Feeling Connected to Your Work = Authentic Learning! Thanks for sharing your drawing, Graeme!

Next SBC Meeting: Wednesday, September 25th, 7:00pm, Hartwell multipurpose room.

Making Choices…

Last Wednesday the SBC continued the Value Engineering (VE) process to ensure the project remains on budget. As reported last week, the cost estimates at the end of the 60% Construction Documents phase (60% CD) came in about $2.8M higher than the budget, so the SBC embarked on another round of VE. We’ll be honest, this is not the fun part of the job. As the Committee works through a series of cost-reduction line items, we are guided by the Project Principles that the SBC and the community established and articulated two years ago:

  • Focus on educational value
  • Make the project Net Zero
  • Respect the look and feel of the campus
  • Make choices that retain the long-term value of the project

After Wednesday’s meeting, VE is almost complete and the SBC expects to complete the process this week (Wednesday, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room).

What happens next?

  • Once VE is complete, the project officially moves into the 90% Construction Documents phase (90% CD). This phase is when the final details are fleshed out in preparation for putting the project out to bid.
  • We already have a Construction Manager (Consigli), but need to solicit bids for the areas of the project that are subcontracted (e.g. plumbing, HVAC, etc.)
  • The 90% CD phase will be completed by the end of December. One more round of cost estimates is performed before the bid documents are finalized.
  • UPDATE: The temporary classroom units will start arriving from the Hanscom campus on WEDNESDAY night (this is a change). 6-7 trailers per night will be delivered over the course of a number of nights until all 37 units are on the campus.

Just for fun…(click on the question to see the answer)

Value Engineering – Part 2

At the end of each phase of the school project, the project team performs a new round of cost estimating. We are now at the end of the 60% Construction Documents phase, and at last Wednesday’s meeting the SBC reviewed the latest estimates. They came in about $2.8M above budget, so the SBC is engaged in Value Engineering to keep the project on budget. Here is a brief synopsis of the project’s cost estimation history:

  • The project scope and budget was set at $93.9M by the June 2018 Special Town Meeting.
  • In September 2018, at the end of Schematic Design, the reconciled cost estimate was $104M, and the SBC went through an extensive round of Value Engineering to keep the project on budget.
  • At a Special Town Meeting and ballot vote in December 2018, the $93.9M project was approved. The tax impact of the bond is here.
  • In April 2019, at the end of Design Development, the cost estimates determined that the project was on budget.

So if the project was on budget in April, why did the latest estimates come in higher?

  • Our project is about 75% renovation/25% new construction.
  • Two major goals of the project are to 1) ensure a comfortable and healthy learning environment, and 2) make the building net zero.
  • Meeting those goals means there is a heavy emphasis on the building envelope and the mechanical systems.
  • The 60% Construction Documents phase is when the specifications and details of those systems are determined. Therefore, this difference in cost estimates is not unusual.

The SBC began the process of cutting costs last Wednesday, and the process will continue over the next couple of weeks. An additional SBC meeting has been added on this coming Wednesday, September 4th, 7pm, in the Hartwell multipurpose room.

Click here to see a comparison of the three cost estimates.

Is the project continuing to meet its EUI (energy use intensity) goal of ~23? To find out, click here. To learn more about net zero and EUI, visit the FAQs home page.

Logistics Update

Next SBC meeting is Wednesday, August 28th, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room. Topics include: review 60% CD cost estimates; make value engineering decisions; review energy model.

From Superintendent McFall:

What to expect August 26 through September 18:

Possible impact to activities on the Ballfield Road campus:
NEW! – The Modular Classrooms will be arriving September 9th – 18th! The temporary school building that will house the K-4 school from August 2020 – August 2022 will be developed using modular classrooms that are currently at Hanscom Air Force Base (HAFB). The modular classrooms were used as temporary school facilities while we constructed Hanscom Middle School and Hanscom Primary School and will now be moved to Lincoln and refreshed to create the K-4 portion of the Lincoln School.

To create the temporary school, 37 modular classrooms will be transported from HAFB to the Ballfield Road campus between September 9th and September 18th. The classrooms are large and will be loaded on trucks that will take up most of the roadway as they move from HAFB to Ballfield Road. Our construction team has been developing the logistics of this move with the Lincoln Police Department and HAFB Security Forces. Here are some of the details:

  • The modular classrooms will be moved during the night to minimize traffic delays. They will be transported between the hours of 10pm and 5am.
  • Police will provide traffic details at key points along the route to assist with traffic control, if necessary.
  • 37 modular units will be transported, approximately 6-7 units per night.
  • This work will not take place on weekends.
  • All modular units will be within the fenced construction area by 6am prior to the arrival of staff and students to the Ballfield Road campus.
  • The travel route will go from HAFB to Route 2A, down Bedford Road crossing Route 2 and continuing down Lincoln Road, finally turning onto the Ballfield Road campus (see map below).
  • Once on the campus, the modular units will be taken through the Hartwell parking lot and into the fenced construction area (see attached diagram).
  • Overnight parking in the Hartwell parking lot will be prohibited September 9 -18.
  • Within the fenced off construction zone, the foundation for the modular building will be prepared. The foundation will include piers and a stone pad.
  • Excavation will begin to prepare for utilities and laying the foundation for the modular classroom building.
  • Preparations for a temporary parking area adjacent to the modular building will begin.
  • Parking spaces adjacent to the center field in front of the Brooks entrance may not be available for use.
  • There may be minor traffic delays when trucks are delivering materials.
  • The northern half of the center field will not be available for use until the end of the project in the fall of 2022.
Route modulars will take through Lincoln..

What Will Not be Impacted:

  • The Codman Pool and the Brooks parking lot will be open for regular operation.
  • The Lincoln Public Schools Central Offices and Facilities Office will be open for regular business (M-F).
  • The Lincoln School main offices will be open.

A Further Look Ahead:

  • The northern half of the center field will be occupied by the temporary modular classrooms and will not be available for use until the end of the project in the fall of 2022.
  • All students will remain in their current buildings for the 2019 – 2020 school year.
  • We do not anticipate major disruptions to drop off and pick up traffic during the 2019 – 2020 school year. Construction traffic will not be allowed during peak traffic times.

Just for Fun

What are the green barriers all over campus? Click here to find out!

Are you reading this on Lincoln Talk? (If not, thanks for being a subscriber!) Do you want to get a school project update directly from the SBC to your inbox? Enter your email below and click “Subscribe”SBC Outreach Team

Join 357 other subscribers

Site Update

Are you reading this on Lincoln Talk? (If not, thanks for being a subscriber!) Do you want to get a school project update directly from the SBC to your inbox? Go to and click “SUBSCRIBE.” You will get an email confirming your subscription. New blog posts come out 1 time/week on Sunday evening – so you won’t be bombarded!SBC Outreach Team

Site Update

This week SMMA showed the latest refinement to the site plan. Some items of interest:

  • To meet public safety requirements, there will be a new access road around the northern and western perimeter of the school (the back of the school). Most of the road will be 8’ wide, with two exceptions: 1) the section that will service the new kitchen and loading dock; and 2) the driveway from the Smith parking lot to the CASE classrooms.
  • The “green playground” will be shifted slightly, and new equipment will be installed. The swings that are currently behind the Smith school will be relocated to the other side of the emergency access road.
  • There will be a new basketball court at the middle school end of the building.
  • A new bike/pedestrian path will connect the current sidewalk to the entrance near the Kindergarten, allowing students to access the entrance without crossing traffic.
  • A bike path will go around the parking lot and lead to Codman Pool.
  • There will be a new connection between the Auditorium and the Reed Gym. See the detail below:

See more…

More Info…

  • Next meeting is August 28th, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room.
  • 8/14 meeting slides are here.
  • Latest budget report is here.
  • Click here for the updated project schedule.
  • Latest logistics letter from Superintendent McFall.

Progress – Inside and Out

During the past week, exploratory work went on inside the school. This was done to get a precise understanding of the infrastructure hidden in the ceilings. How does this help? The photo of the Consigli worker on the ladder is taken at the spot in the building that will become the dividing line between Phase 1 (Brooks) and Phase 2 (Smith) of the project. The construction team will have to ensure that one half of the building is operational for faculty and students while the other half is under construction. NOTE: All ceilings will be re-installed this coming week.

Outside, J&J Construction has been hard at work pouring the footings for the temporary classrooms. J&J, which has built both the Hanscom Primary and Middle schools, was retained by Consigli to both prepare the site and move the temporary units from Hanscom to the Lincoln School. The move will happen in stages during the month of September.

Just for fun...

a) How many units will be put together to create the temporary school?

b) How many footings are being poured?

c) What does this sign mean?

Click here for the answers and to see more photos of the site!

REMEMBER: SBC meeting this Wednesday, August 14th, 7pm, Hartwell multipurpose room. The meeting will feature site plan and floor plan updates and a construction update.

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