Jan 292014

Mayor Thomas Koch and Superintendent Richard DeCristofaro met Wednesday with members of the Massachusetts School Building Authority, which issued a critical preliminary vote that will begin formal planning for a Sterling Middle School project. The Sterling project will be Quincy’s third major school project in just the last few years and creates the foundation of a broader program of major improvements to schools citywide that include major roof repairs, window replacements, and campus and field upgrades among a litany of other projects.

“There is no more important investment than the ones we make in our young people, and we must continue to move forward with these vital projects. Sterling is another project discussed for years, and we’re going to get it done,” said Koch. “I wish to thank Treasurer Steve Grossman and the MSBA their unbending commitment to investing in educational facilities statewide.”

Added Dr. DeCristofaro, “The Sterling Middle School project will provide unparalleled opportunities to the students and families of Southwest Quincy. A new Sterling Middle School will provide the school’s dedicated staff with a state-of-the-art facility that allows them to enhance educational and extracurricular programs in academics, arts, technology, and athletics. We know from our recent experiences at Quincy High School and Central Middle School that these new facilities transform and enhance a school’s culture and climate in so many ways.”

Ward City Councilor Brian Palmucci, who has lobbied extensively for a Sterling project, said that the SBA vote was “a great first step many years in the making. This is a vital project for our city and especially for this neighborhood.”

The vote by the SBA board essentially qualifies the City to move forward in the coming months with preliminary planning for a Sterling project that will in turn lead to a full feasibility study and then on to design. The ultimate goal is to qualify the building project for state reimbursement, which dramatically lowers the cost of new buildings for City taxpayers.

At its meeting on Wednesday, the School Building Authority also approved the Accelerated Repair Program design schematics for the North Quincy High School, Wollaston and Merrymount Elementary School window and door replacement projects. These projects will now proceed to the next stage, which includes execution of the the Project Funding Agreements and preparation of bid packages.  Installation of new windows and doors for all three schools is scheduled for Summer 2014.