Ed Shearson, project manager at ThenDesign Architecture in Willoughby, discusses plans for the new building to house all middle schools students at Monday’s school board meeting.
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BRUNSWICK — Planning for a new building to replace three aging middle schools is still in the schematic stage, the project manager for an architecture design firm told the Brunswick Board of Education on Monday.
With every planning meeting, teachers, school officials and others involved in the project provide new ideas and input, said Ed Shearson, project manager at ThenDesign Architecture in Willoughby.
It takes a lot of work to try to fit what is needed for the building on the current lot, so the planning meetings and input are beneficial, he said.
In November, district voters approved a $48.1 million bond issue to allow Brunswick to consolidate Edwards, Visintainer and Willetts into one building on 30 acres of land owned by the district on Pearl Road behind Edwards, built in 1921, and Visintainer, built in 1949.
Superintendent Mike Mayell previously said the future of Willetts remains under discussion, while Visintainer and Edwards would be torn down. He said Willetts could become a professional development center, high school STEM school or board of education offices, or Towslee Elementary students could move to Willetts.
Mayell said safety also must be considered while planning this new building because school would still be in session when work begins, most likely in spring next year.
In order to keep students at Edwards safe, the school board is working to make the traffic light at Pearl Road a little longer along with placing staff members near the crosswalk.
In addition, they have discussed moving staff parking across the street to keep students from having to cross Pearl to be picked up by a parent.
“I can assure you, we won’t make any situation unsafe for our kids,” Mayell said.
At the new building there will be 312 parking spaces, which is the state standard.
The bond issue also will fund a multipurpose athletic facility with a new stadium and eight-lane track, a synthetic turf field and bleacher seating for 1,800 people.
There will be two gyms, the main gym and the auxiliary gym.
“The main gym will seat at least 600 and about 300 for the auxiliary gym,” Shearson said.
The dining area will seat a third of the middle school population, which is about 560 students, he said.
There also will be a wing for special education students.
There will be 1,600 students once the three middle schools come together under one roof. The school is being built to accommodate 1,800 students to allow for district growth.