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School Building Committee Approves Maloney Design and Budget

If passed by the full board on Tuesday, the project will be submitted for state approval on July 24.

A design and budget estimate for the renovation is nearly in place.

The School Building Committee unanimously approved the plan Thursday night and if the full Board of Education gives its OK on Tuesday evening, the Maloney renovation plans will be submitted to the state board of education for approval at a meeting July 24.

The endorsed budget estimate of $107.4 million is nearly $80,000 under the project budget approved by the city council. It does not, however, include construction costs for a full-fly system for the auditorium.

A full-fly system, recommended by committee member Brian Cyr, musical director at Maloney, allows the curtains and scenery to be raised vertically from the stage. Architects for the project estimate that such a system will add between $1.7 and $2.1 million to the cost of the renovation.  

In June, Maloney renovation plans, which had been running ahead of schedule, were pushed back by about a month when it was discovered that they did not include a full-fly option for the auditorium. The committee approved an additional $69,850 in costs to design a full-fly system for the school, as well as other costs incurred by delaying the schedule.

Fletcher Thompson, the architects for the project, came up with a full-fly design option, which was presented at Thursday’s meeting. It will add 27 feet in building height above the stage. Costs for the new design haven't been determined yet, said Angela Cahill, project manager for Fletcher Thompson.

"I would like to give Fletcher Thompson some kudos," said Wilma DePietro, purchasing agent for the city. The firm developed the new design quickly and gave a 20 percent discount on its design fee, she told the committee.

At its previous meeting, the committee recommended that a full fly be added only if it can be done within the city-approved project budget. The city council has voted to bond $216.7 million for the combined renovations of Platt and Maloney high schools.

The full-fly alternative will be submitted along with the original auditorium design to state authorities for review, according to Cahill. When construction bids come in at the end of this year, the School Building Committee will revisit the full-fly option to determine if it is financially feasible.

According to the schedule presented by Fletcher Thompson, construction bids are expected to go out in November, with ground breaking likely in January.

The renovation, which is not as far along as its Maloney counterpart, will also include a full-fly alternative. The School Building Committee Thurssday night approved the design costs, identical to those for Maloney. Antinozzi Associates, architects for the project, will now develop the alternative design.

In other news, the addition is progressing on schedule, according to Robert Andrade, architect for the project. Costs are currently projected at about $5.6 million, well under the $7.3 million originally budgeted for the project. The addition, which will house the school’s new full-day kindergarten program, is scheduled for completion in January.

Richard Kiewlen July 14, 2012 at 01:49 PM
Make the high schools a "no fly zone". Never mind if it's within budget, save the money instead and lower the overall cost to the taxpayers!
M Donna July 15, 2012 at 05:14 AM
It does seem to be a pretty unnecessary expenditure in consideration of the economic situation and the state/city budget issues.
Bud Greenbacker July 17, 2012 at 03:21 PM
This whole project is a waste of money. Renovate the buildings we have. Why build new and tear down perfectly sound structures.

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