Framingham, MA - April 30, 2018 - Tonight, the School Building Committee (SBC) for the Fuller Middle School Building Project selected the plan titled “Folded Hands” as the preferred design for the project. By selecting the design on time, the building committee meets a milestone allowing for the City of Framingham to move forward and submit plans to the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA). The MSBA is the state agency charged with overseeing and supporting school improvement projects with state grants.
“I’m excited to see our city reach this important decision-making milestone. The realization of a much-needed middle school to replace our tired and inadequate building would be an investment in the community that would benefit generations of students,” said Superintendent Dr. Robert Tremblay. “Placing our highly qualified instructional staff in a school that is designed to challenge our students and prepare them for a lifelong journey is a tremendous gift to our children. With the promise of partial reimbursement from the MSBA, the window of opportunity to move ahead with this long-overdue project is now.”
Fuller Middle School has served the community well for over 60 years. The school has reached a point that it no longer meets today's building codes, has structural deficiencies, inefficient and inoperable systems, and does not adequately support our educational curriculum. The MSBA has visited the school and agrees. The MSBA and City of Framingham are currently completing a feasibility study, which is the required initial step to explore the school's conditions and develop a cost effective, sustainable, and educationally appropriate solution for the aging Fuller Middle School.
The Folded Hands design option offers a new three-story construction with a learning commons/cafeteria at the core surrounded by collaboration balconies fronting a perimeter of classrooms, an 8,300-square-foot gymnasium, 750-seat auditorium, and full-building air conditioning. Additionally, there will be space for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM) instructional areas and it is the best option for energy efficiency and open space. No swing space is required during construction which means a lack of neighborhood interference and there will be no need to temporarily move students to an alternative location. The approximate total project cost is $110.5 Million with the City’s share after the grant from the MSBA estimated to be $66.6 Million.
Last week, the School Building Committee heard that they no longer needed to construct space for Adult ESL at the new Fuller Middle School building. By moving this project next door to the Farley Building, the total cost of the Fuller project is reduced by $2.4 million - $2.3 million of that was expected to come from the city. Following the discovery and discussion at last week’s meeting, the SBC voted to finalize multiple attributes for the project, and tonight’s decision completes a long-term committee and community effort to select the design. Project recommendations have come in through an extensive formal process of interviews and inputs from faculty, FPS administration, and the community over the last few months.
On May 9, the Preferred Schematic Report (PSR) including the preferred design option will be submitted to the MSBA. Once the MSBA approves the report, the project will move to the Schematic Design Phase. During this time the Architect, Jonathan Levi Architects, will develop a robust design of sufficient detail to establish the scope, budget and schedule for the new Fuller Middle School.
Over the coming months the School Building Committee will continue to work with stakeholders including residents, teachers, students, families, and elected officials to further refine the plans and move closer to project authorization. A series of community forums will be scheduled for the spring, summer, and fall. The next community forum will be held on Monday June 11th from 6-8 p.m..
About the School Building Committee
Framingham’s School Building Committee on the Fuller Middle School Building Project was formed in accordance with Massachusetts School Building Authority requirements to oversee the study and project on behalf of the community. Membership of the group comes from City Government leadership, a City Council Member, Framingham Public School leadership, School Committee Members, teachers, engineers, and representatives from the community. The SBC has met approximately every two weeks since the fall of 2017. Over the course of more than fifteen School Building Committee meetings, eight design options were discussed and evaluated, and several academic leadership meetings and four community forums occurred since last fall. The committee focused on the following criteria when developing the options: educational benefits, cost, minimal disruption to students during construction, sustainability, community use, and transportation.
To find additional information regarding the Fuller Middle School Building Project, visit www.fullerbuildingproject.com. To receive email notifications about important project information related to the Fuller Middle School Building Project, please subscribe to the City’s “Notify Me” system.