The MSBA's Designer Selection Panel Ranks Firms for Potential Contract for North Reading Middle/High School

April 19, 2011

BOSTON, MA - State Treasurer Steven Grossman, Chair of the Massachusetts School Building Authority (“MSBA”) and Katherine Craven, MSBA Executive Director, announced today that the MSBA’s Designer Selection Panel (“DSP”) has recommended that a contract be awarded to Dore & Whittier Architects, Inc. for the design of North Reading Middle/High School. The DSP, which included three representatives from North Reading, carefully studied each applicant’s qualifications, experience and references and voted to rank the firms in the following order: (1) Dore & Whittier Architects, Inc., (2) Flansburgh Associates, Inc. and (3) Tappé Associates, Inc.

The creation of the Designer Selection Panel was a major reform of the school building construction process, aimed at selecting the highest quality design services for school districts. The selection of Dore & Whittier Architects, Inc. for the project is a significant step towards making the necessary improvements to North Reading Middle/High School that will result in a vastly improved educational environment for its students.

“The Designer Selection Panel is another innovative way the MSBA helps communities across Massachusetts to build and finance efficient, sustainable and affordable schools. By choosing a designer, North Reading moves an important step closer to identifying the best solutions for North Reading Middle/High School,” said Treasurer Grossman.

“This is a great milestone for both the MSBA and North Reading,” stated Katherine Craven, MSBA Executive Director. “We look forward to continuing our work with the town in creating an improved learning environment for the students and teachers in this district.”

The statute that created the MSBA places tremendous emphasis on planning, due diligence and prioritization of MSBA resources. The DSP is authorized to select designers, programmers and other entities providing feasibility studies in connection with public school construction projects seeking funding from the MSBA and whose construction cost will potentially be $5 million or more. The DSP, which includes the participation of local officials associated with a project, plays a critical role in the selection and recommendation of the best available design firms for the modernization and construction of Massachusetts public school facilities so that precious state dollars are invested in better designed schools that are structurally safe and encourage student learning.