MSBA Board Votes W. Edward Balmer Elementary School into Schematic Design

BOSTON - State Treasurer Deborah B. Goldberg, Chair of the Massachusetts School Building Authority ("MSBA"), and MSBA Executive Director/Deputy CEO John K. McCarthy announced today that the MSBA Board of Directors voted to move W. Edward Balmer Elementary School, located in the Town of Northbridge, into the Schematic Design phase. In the Schematic Design phase, the MSBA and the District will look at possible options, to consolidate the student population of the existing W. Edward Balmer and Northbridge Elementary Schools into a new building serving grades PK-5, on the existing site of the W. Edward Balmer Elementary School. The next step is for the MSBA to work in collaboration with the District to produce detailed designs for a potential project.

"Thanks to our collaborative work with local officials, we are working to build a 21st century educational facility that will provide Northbridge students with a top-notch learning environment," said Treasurer Goldberg.

The proposed project would create a new 171,530 square foot facility at the W. Edward Balmer Elementary School site that consolidates the student population of the existing Northbridge Elementary School and the W. Edward Balmer Elementary School. The District reported in their Statement of Interest, numerous deficiencies that are associated with: outdated mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems, non-compliant accessibility conditions, overcrowding, and space constraints inhibiting the District’s ability to deliver its educational program. The District also identified poor energy efficiency performance of the existing facility because of the building envelope, roof conditions, and single pane windows. The existing W. Edward Balmer Elementary School is a 70,857 square foot facility located on a 30 acre site, which currently serves students in grades 2-4.

"The new W. Edward Balmer Elementary School will mean a better learning and teaching location for students and teachers," stated Executive Director/Deputy CEO McCarthy.

The MSBA partners with Massachusetts communities to support the design and construction of educationally appropriate, flexible, sustainable and cost-effective public school facilities. Since its 2004 inception, the Authority has made over 1,750 site visits to more than 250 school districts as part of its due diligence process and has made over $13 billion in reimbursements for school construction projects.