Architectural firm presents findings on CMS facility, plans for future

Architectural firms investigating Coleytown Middle School gave a presentation regarding issues with the school building at the Board of Education (BOE) meeting on Nov. 5. Representatives from KG&D Architects, Watsky Associates and OLA Consulting Engineers proposed various solutions to the circumstance which will be further evaluated before a final decision is made.

According to the representatives, issues with the school facility include widespread deficiencies in the roofing system, failing windows and insulation and issues with the original design of the school. As a result, water stains the surface of the building and leaks from the walls.

“These issues that we’re dealing with here are not maintenance issues; these are design and construction issues,” Joe Reilly from KG&D Architects said. “It is not neglect that has led to these issues; it is nature taking its course on an assembly that is not built the way it should have been to handle these issues.”

Three options for the future were presented by the architectural firm, labeled 1A, 1B and option two. Both 1A and 1B entail replacing the school’s exterior wall system, replacing the windows, doors and modifying the mechanical system. 1A would include replacing the unit ventilators, whereas 1B entails removing the unit ventilators and providing an alternative.

It is estimated that both would allow for CMS to be reopened in 2021, with 1Acosting an estimated $25 million and 1B costing  $35 million.

Option 2 would entail replacing the school altogether, which would take an estimated three years and cost $60 million to $70 million.

The BOE supports gathering townwide committees to come up with a solution, ideally producing a plan for the 2019-2020 school year by winter break.

As you can imagine, almost any way we can look at next year is being considered,” Palmer said through email to the district prior to the meeting.  “Needing to build the budget for the Town approval process will put added pressure for the District to decide on how we will structure ourselves next year as soon as possible.”

Palmer plans to send a weekly update through email to all staff.