Preferred Schematic Report Approved by MSBA, District to Move Forward with Schematic Design Phase
NORWOOD — Superintendent David Thomson and the Norwood Middle School Building Committee are pleased to announce that plans for the new Coakley Middle School are moving forward.
At its Aug. 25 meeting the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) voted for the Town of Norwood to proceed into the Schematic Design phase of the Coakley Middle School Project, which proposes to replace the Dr. Philip O. Coakley Middle School.
The proposed new Coakley Middle School would open in 2025 for approximately 1,070 middle school students.
The School Building Committee has contracted with Ai3 Architects of Wayland and Compass Project Management of Norwood to complete the final design program, project scope and schematic design.
“We are proud of the work completed in our educational plan and in the initial design of this new learning facility,” Superintendent Thomson said. “We are excited to move into the schematic design phase, where we can design a school to offer the best educational opportunities for all of our students.”
The MSBA Board decision was based on a Preferred Schematic Report submitted in July by the School Building Committee. The report was based on a feasibility study that recommended a new school be built on the current Coakley Middle School site and also included the Norwood School Committee’s decision to change the grade configuration for a new Coakley Middle School to include grades 5-8.
“Our Educational Plan thoroughly describes the vision we have for a new Coakley Middle School,” School Committee Chair Teresa Stewart said. “Throughout the MSBA process we received positive feedback on Norwood’s Grade 5-8 Plan. The plan will continue to be at the core of all decisions made for the new Coakley Middle School. Schools are a community asset, and we strive to design a new middle school that meets the unique needs of Norwood.”
The preferred project option will be further developed in the Schematic Design phase, which will also establish the final Project Scope and Budget. The MSBA would reimburse the Town a percentage of the project cost, which will be based on the eligible costs as determined by MSBA guidelines. The remainder of the project cost would need to be fulfilled by the Town. The Town anticipates seeking community approval of this proposed project in the spring of 2022.
“This is certainly a significant milestone for the project,” Finance Commissioner and Middle School Building Committee Chair Alan Slater said. “What it means is that the MSBA has agreed to the building size, educational plan and grade configuration. There is still plenty of work to be done, but this is great news.”
For more information about the project visit newcmsproject.org. Interested community members can also register for the next Public Forum, which will take place via Zoom on Thursday, Sept. 23 at 7 p.m.