We wait…

…with bated breath…On Thursday, the schematic design for the Lincoln School project was sent out for cost estimation (here are the slides from the September 12th meeting which give an overview of the elements of the project). In keeping with best practices, the design will be evaluated by two different groups of estimators. The work will take about 2 weeks and we will review the preliminary estimates at the September 26th SBC meeting. Thus begins a two-part process. First, the two groups of estimators will meet to reconcile the two estimates. Second, the design team (SMMA) and our Owners Project Manager (Daedalus) will develop a list of items for the SBC to consider in the value engineering process.

As anyone who has done a remodel project knows, there’s a chance that these first estimates may come in at, below, or above the $93.9M cost estimate that was voted on in June. That’s a normal (if nervewracking) part of the process! The SBC then moves on to the next phase during which it evaluates costs and possible trade-offs among design, functionality, and features to stay within our goals and budget. These could be tough conversations, ones which require each of us to continue to compromise in order to achieve our big goal: a transformational renovation project that will provide spaces that support our educational vision in a safe, comfortable building that maximizes sustainability and honors the history of the site.

To read more about the schematic design process and value engineering, take a look at our June 6th blog post.

Upcoming SBC Schedule: 

  • September 26th SBC Meeting: Review preliminary cost estimates.  After this, the estimators meet to reconcile the two estimates, and SMMA and Daedalus develop lists of items to be considered in the value-engineering process.
  • October 3rd SBC Meeting: Review reconciled cost estimates; SBC begins the value-engineering process.
  • Further schedule TBD – We may elect to keep to our weekly schedule!

Thank you! To everyone who engaged with the SBC at the Back to School picnic, during the Brooks curriculum night, and at the outreach session hosted by the Council on Aging!

9/12 iteration of the Dining Commons

Getting Caught Up

On Wednesday the School Building Committee hosted two Community Workshop sessions. There was a great cross-section of the community represented both in the morning and in the evening, and we thank everyone for making time during what is always a hectic week!

The presentation focused on six main areas of the project: the floor plan (where are all the rooms?); the new flexible hub spaces in grades 3 – 8; the central entrance & Commons; the site (how do we make cars, cyclists and walkers all happy?!); sustainability; and phasing (where does everyone go while we’re renovating?) Click here to see the slides from the presentation. Video of the Workshop is available at www.lincolntv.viebit.com.

At the next SBC meeting on September 12th, the committee will sign off on the schematic design and send the plans to the cost estimators. This does not mean that all the design work is done – the details are fleshed out during the design development phase (which comes after the December bond vote) – but this current phase establishes the major design and construction components of the project.

Outreach Events: Couldn’t make it to the workshops? Take the opportunity to talk directly to SBC members at these two upcoming events:

  • Thursday, September 13th – PTO Welcome Back Picnic, 5:00 – 7:00pm, Codman Pool parking lot.
  • Friday, September 14th – Bemis Hall, 1:00pm

 

It’s Time to Go Back to School (Building Committee)!

Community Workshops: THIS WEDNESDAY, September 5th – 2 Sessions
• 8:00am – 10:00am
• 7:00pm – 9:00pm
• Both (identical) sessions will be in the Brooks (Reed) Gym

The SBC has been meeting all summer and a lot of work has been done. This is your opportunity to get caught up and ask questions before we send the schematic designs to the cost estimators!

What can you expect? The design team will present all that has been done to advance the “L3” concept we voted for on June 9th. Topics will include:

  • Floor Plans – Where are the grades? How are the hubs and the commons laid out? Where is the new kitchen?
  • Site Plan – Traffic flow, pedestrian paths, bike paths, parking.
  • Sustainability – What needs to be done to try to reach our goal of a net zero building?
  • Phasing – Where will students go during renovation?
  • Next Steps – What is the SBC working on over the next couple of months?

Please consider this a hand-delivered, personal invitation to attend one of the sessions! It takes a Town to make a school project successful, and we hope you will join us to learn more and ask questions.

– The SBC Outreach Team

“Heart of the School” & Phasing…

“Heart of the School”One of the main features of the “L3” concept chosen on June 9th is the creation of new, centralized, “heart of the school.” This area, which will serve grades preK – 8, will be created with a combination of new construction and renovation of the existing library. It will include the new dining commons and kitchen, the administrative offices, and the media center (aka library), and it will become an area of the school that brings all students and faculty together. The design team and the SBC have considered a number of design possibilities, and are continuing to think about the architecture of this project focal point.  Click on the slides from this week’s SBC meeting to see the latest thinking.

Where Will the Students Go?Another topic discussed at the August 22 SBC meeting was the phasing plan. Once construction begins, the project will take about 3 years.  As proposed, the first phase renovates the middle school, taking about 18 months. At the end of that time, the middle school moves into the renovated Brooks end of the building, and renovation of the elementary grades begins. Click on the link to the presentation to learn more.

NEXT MEETING:  WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 29th, 7:00PM, HARTWELL MULTIPURPOSE ROOM.

On the agenda: Updated floor plans; updated exterior elevations; preliminary discussion of interior spaces; preliminary discussion about technology and furniture; follow-up on photovoltaic discussion; discussion of decision timeline from now until December 1st.

The Building, PV Panels, and Us…

this is what we need to meet our goal of making the Lincoln School a “net zero” building.

Make no mistake, this is an ambitious goal that requires careful planning, attention to detail, and conscious decisions about how we use the building. A further complexity of meeting our goal is the fact that this is essentially a renovation project, not new construction. This Wednesday, August 15th, 7pm, Hartwell Multipurpose room, the SBC invites you to join us for a meeting that will focus on the many sustainability components of the project.

The Building: The “building envelope” and the type of heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) system we choose both have a huge impact on the efficiency of the building.

Building Envelope: This is made up of the walls, roof, and windows.  To have a building that uses the least amount of energy, the school must be protected by a continuous and substantial layer of insulation. Because the Lincoln School was originally built as separate buildings in numerous phases between 1948 and 1994, the current campus has many different types of construction. So what does that mean for the project?

  • To meet our goal of a building that generates as much energy as it consumes (“net zero”) we must create a unified building envelope.
  • Only a small portion (about 20 – 25%) of the project is new construction.
  • In general, most of the exterior walls will need to be rebuilt to meet current structural codes and to accommodate the necessary insulation.

HVAC System: According to the guidelines adopted by Lincoln in 2008, a net zero building cannot rely on fossil fuels for heating or cooking because they are not (easily) renewable sources of energy. Currently the school is heated by natural gas boilers. The project is looking at new HVAC and kitchen systems that will be all-electric, offset by electricity generated by PV panels (see below).

Photovoltaic (PV) Panels: Another key component of net zero is energy generation to offset electricity consumption.  Where? How? On August 15th, the design team will introduce a preliminary PV plan that shows the location of panels on the roof and over parking lots.

Us: The third big factor is, of course, us – get used to hearing the term “plug loads”! Plug load simply refers to all of the stuff we plug into an outlet – computers, coffee pots, science lab equipment, copy machines, microwaves, electric pencil sharpeners, lava lamps…you get the idea. This will be a topic of many future conversations!

SAVE THE DATE! COMMUNITY WORKSHOPS on WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 5TH!

TWO SESSIONS: 8am – 10am & 7pm – 9pm, Brooks Gym

August 8th Recap: The SBC spent a lot of time talking about the site plan and design ideas for the new part of the building which will house the dining commons, kitchen, and administrative offices. Click here to see the slide presentation, and here to watch the meeting video.

Coming Next: The SBC will be meeting on the following dates:

  • August 15th – Focus on Sustainability
  • August 22nd – Floor Plans, Site Plans, Exterior Design
  • August 29th – Updates on everything!
  • SEPTEMBER 5th: COMMUNITY WORKSHOPS!!! THIS IS BIG – Please be there!
  • September 12th – Finalize Floor Plans, Site Plans, Exterior Design, Systems and Sustainability so that we can send it all to the cost estimators!

Change of Plans…

…SBC adds an August 15th meeting to the schedule.

Looking at all that needs to be accomplished in August, the SBC has added an additional meeting on August 15th (7:00pm, Hartwell multipurpose room).

Here’s a rundown of what will be covered in the next three meetings:

August 8th: Looking at the outside!

  • Site Plans: Update and Discussion
  • Exteriors: Update and Discussion
  • Structural Systems
  • Review Meeting Schedule

August 15th: All about sustainability!

  • Mechanical Systems: Update and Discussion
  • Energy Model: Presentation and Discussion
  • Photovoltaic Plan: Presentation and Discussion

August 22nd: Covering it all!

  • Review Site Plan
  • Review Floor Plans
  • Review Updated Exterior Elevations
  • Phasing Plans
  • Preliminary Interior Spaces Review

We hope you’ll make Wednesday nights a standing date with the SBC…if you can’t be there in person, meetings are televised.

So What Might it Look Like?

“Honoring our History, Building our Future” is not just our project’s motto, it translates into decisions we have already made (choosing L3 on June 9th) and into the decisions we are making now during the schematic design phase of the project. At the July 25th meeting, SMMA and EwingCole introduced exterior elevation renderings to the SBC. This takes the project out of the 2-dimensional phase, and launches us into 3-D.  In other words, what might the building look like? As with every other aspect of the project, this is an iterative process of design refinement, but it was clear from the design team’s presentation that they understood our motto, and are using it as a guiding principle for their designs. The elevations presented focused on 3 main areas of the exterior: classroom wings; the front of the central entrance/dining commons; and the western (back) view of the commons.

Classroom Wings:  When the Smith School was built in 1948, one of its ground-breaking features (see pages 126-129) was the use of canopies to shield the classrooms from the glare of the eastern exposure. Although they were made of wood and were removed several decades ago when they began to rot, this type of canopy is now a standard feature in architecture. As shown in these sketches (sloped roof is at the Smith end, flat roof is at the Brooks end), our design team is proposing a modern version that would not only restore the look of the building and control how sunlight enters the classroom (reducing the need for both artificial light and window shades), but the canopy would also be covered in photovoltaic panels to generate electricity.

Heart of the School: The new central entrance, Commons and administrative area form the “heart” of our building. The design team drew on both agricultural and modernist themes to propose an understated entrance to the school.  They also showed a concept for the west side of the area. The design team is going to continue to work on the design of this important focal point and bring additional concepts to the next meeting on August 8th.

7/25 Concept for Main Entrance

The SBC also talked about traffic circulation and pick-up/drop-off options, and will continue to review site plans at the next several meetings. Here is the entire slide presentation, and you can watch the meeting and the conversation by going to the home page and clicking on “meeting videos.”

Use Your Influence! This is a very exciting phase of the project, with many crucial decisions that must be made in just a couple of (very!) short months – come join our intrepid band of “SBC groupies” and make sure your voice is part of the decision-making! Meetings are always open to the public. If you can’t be there in person, look at the presentations or watch the meeting videos and provide us with your feedback. You can respond through the website, comment on blog posts, or contact the SBC by emailing sbc@lincnet.org.

Next Meeting: Wednesday, August 8, 7:00pm, Hartwell Multipurpose room. There will be a special focus on the location of mechanical systems and photovoltaic panels – where’s all that stuff going to fit? There will also be continued discussions about floor plans, site plans, and exterior elevations.  Click here for the fall schedule.

REMINDER: SBC Meeting on Wednesday!

Google Earth image

Wednesday, July 25th, 7:00pm, Hartwell Multipurpose Room: The SBC will focus on two big topics:

Building Exterior: SMMA/EwingCole will introduce plans for the building’s exterior. How will the new central entrance/Commons look? What kinds of materials will we use?

Site Plan: How will bus and car drop-offs work? Where do pedestrians and cyclists go? What are the opportunities for outdoor learning spaces? Where is the parking?

There will also be a review of the preliminary “roof scape” plan.  This will show ideas about the rooflines of the building and how mechanical systems and solar panels fit into the design.

The meeting format will be similar to the prior two meetings – audience members join committee members at tables to review plans and provide feedback. The meeting will be televised.

Up Next: The rest of the summer is equally fast-paced!

  • August 8th: Focus on mechanical, electrical, plumbing systems, wall and roof systems, and photovoltaic arrays.
  • August 22nd: Community charette to focus on interior spaces and security.
  • September 5th: Finalize floor plans, site plans, systems, sustainability features. Plans must be finalized to begin cost estimation process.