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SOTT Feedback…Next Steps

You Like: hubs; dining commons; maker spaces; natural light; a mix of one and two-story spaces; good light and solar orientation; outdoor learning spaces; considering renovation as part of the solution.
You Wish: for environmentally sustainable solutions; to consider renovation options; to understand the costs of different project concepts.
You Wonder: about the pros & cons of renovation vs. new construction; about fields, traffic, pathways; and a range of other important topics!
Many excellent questions and ideas arose out of the feedback from State of the Town. Also, thank you to everyone who looked at the educational program concepts on the website and completed the Survey Monkey feedback form. Click “sticky note comments” and “I like, I wish, I wonder” to read compilations of the community’s input.
So what’s next? The School Building Committee shares the community’s desire and need to understand more about possible renovation solutions and about the relative costs of different approaches. State of the Town was a “big picture” opportunity to look at possible configurations for the educational program, and to get feedback from the Town about different locations of the Lincoln School on the campus. Now it is time to think about the project from the ground up.
Here’s how the SBC will focus its work over the next couple of months:
  • We will be working to understand the differences between the cost of primarily new construction vs. renovation. Given the various ages and conditions of different sections of the Lincoln School, renovation may be a good value in some areas and not in others. Click here to see a draft of SMMA’s “Existing Conditions Report.”
  • We are currently working on a baseline renovation project estimate and on a refined understanding of what such a project would need to include. It is important to note that the Lincoln School is one, roughly 140,000 sq. ft. building (despite our references to the Smith and Brooks Schools), and that all of it will need to be brought up to current life/safety, accessibility, systems, and building codes. As we were reminded at the November 15th SBC meeting, construction costs have, for a number of reasons, escalated at a rapid rate since 2012. If you are interested in seeing the Massachusetts School Building Authority’s latest data, visit
  • We will think about concepts that combine different ratios of renovation and new construction.
  • The SBC will evaluate project concepts on criteria that include educational value, environmental sustainability, impact on campus infrastructure (fields, roads, parking), up-front cost, and long-term value.
Save the Date: The next Community Workshop will be on Tuesday, January 23, 2018. A wide range of concepts, that include cost estimates, will be presented in detail. The SBC will need your input and guidance to evaluate which concepts are viable options for further development!
Remember—all SBC meetings are open to the public, and we want your engagement! The next SBC meeting is on Wednesday, November 29th, 7:00pm, Hartwell multipurpose room.

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