Public hearing on location for new middle school set

By SRUTHI GOPALAKRISHNAN

Monitor staff

Published: 09-24-2023 4:21 PM

The Concord School District will hold public hearings regarding the location of the new middle school, with the options now narrowed down to two parcels owned by the school district.

There will be two separate public hearings: one scheduled for Tuesday at 6 p.m., to be held at the Mill Brook School located at 53 Curtisville Road, and the other on Wednesday, which will be a virtual meeting also at 6 p.m.

After an evaluation of various potential sites, the school district has selected two locations for the new middle school.

These are the current grounds of Rundlett Middle School, a 20-acre area suitable for the new school’s construction, and a 56-acre undeveloped piece of land on South Curtisville Road, in close proximity to Broken Ground School and Mill Brook School.

At the hearings, the school district will provide initial findings from studies conducted on traffic, wildlife, environmental impact, and essential utilities such as water and sewer systems.

The middle school located at 144 South Street was originally constructed in 1957. Over the years, several additional buildings have been added to the campus. However, the current school facility has become outdated and no longer aligns with modern educational approaches like hands-on project-based learning.

“When we looked at the costs associated with renovations and building a new one, it didn’t make sense not to build a new building because it was almost as expensive to renovate it as it was to build,” explained Kathleen Murphy, superintendent of the school district.

With an estimated project cost of $176 million, the school district has applied for state funding. The district is looking forward to a decision on its funding in 2025. Even if school is approved for the funding, the school district would be responsible for 60% of the project’s total expenses.

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The Broken Ground School is not expected to experience any class disruptions, but the construction site at Rundlett Middle School will result in a loss of field space for students.

Murphy assured the school district is engaged in discussions to find additional space for students to practice their games.

Go to https://www.concordmiddleschoolproject.org/public-hearings to attend the virtual hearing.

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