Construction of Concord’s new middle school is marching forward on budget and on schedule despite the summer’s soggy weather.
The project’s general contractor, CTA Construction, began work in early June. Since then, the team has excavated the building site, installed sediment and erosion control structures, placed and tested concrete foundations and begun installing plumbing, electrical and stormwater drainage features, Superintendent Laurie Hunter said in an email.
Now, the construction team is erecting a skeleton of structural steel and an elevator shaft at the site of a future classrooms building, Ian Parks of project manager Hill International reported at an October Concord Middle School Building Committee (CMSBC) meeting. They’re also installing foundation footing and walls for buildings that will someday house the school’s gym, auditorium, library and other common areas, he added.
“In one word … it’s exciting,” Middle School Principal Justin Cameron said during a CMSBC meeting. “The building is really taking form and taking shape.”
Hunter shared that the site has already earned itself an official address: 923 Old Marlboro Road.
Parks noted the summer’s significant rainfall posed a challenge for the construction team, however.
“It looks like a big sandbox out there, so every time [it rains], we have had some pretty significant wash-out,” he said. “It’s not an easy thing to manage, especially when they’re trying to move equipment around the site and create access in different places.”
Parks said the team planted hydroseed on large mounds of soil at the site to combat erosion and set up fencing to prevent water and sediment from leaking onto nearby properties and green spaces.
The project remains on budget: Parks said the town has spent roughly $16.2 of the $111 million in approved funds so far. The CMSBC has also applied for $250,000 from the Community Preservation Committee to offset the amount the town would need to borrow, Chief Information Officer Tom Lucey said. Hunter said these funds would subsidize construction of new softball, baseball, and soccer fields.
The new school is scheduled to open its doors on February 25, 2025, after that month’s vacation, Hunter said.
School officials were reminded of the necessity of the project in August, when custodial staff at Sanborn discovered cracks in the existing school’s locker room walls, Hunter said at a CMSBC meeting. While engineers and officials deemed the building structurally sound, CMSBC Chair Dawn Guarriello called the discovery “validation that we need a new school.”
“That doesn’t seem to be up for debate,” Hunter added.
In the coming weeks and months, the construction team will place concrete slabs on metal support structures and begin framing exterior walls for the buildings.
The CMSBC meets monthly to discuss the project. For more information: www.cmsbuildingproject.org