Amherst Town Manager Paul Bockelman announced the selection of DiNisco Design as the Designer for the Amherst Elementary School Project. The selection was made by the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) Designer Selection Board.
This project follows on two prior projects that studied options for a future elementary school which would combine the Wildwood and Fort River school communities in a single location. The first studied options for a project on the Wildwood site and the second studied comparable options on the Fort River site. The Town’s Elementary School Building Committee (ESBC) will now revisit those options with a new Owner’s Project Manager (OPM) and Designer.
ESBC Chair and Town Councilor Cathy Schoen stated, “This is a very important step for the Town as we move forward with providing a new school for the Town’s elementary students, teachers, and staff. The new building will be an asset for the entire community.”
The goal for the project is to create a high-performance elementary school that supports excellent child-centered education, meets the diverse educational needs of the Town’s children in daylight-filled spaces, uses the outdoors for education and play, and does so in a cost-effective “green” building that incorporates “net zero” energy principles.
School Superintendent Mike Morris added, “We appreciate the excellent leadership and strong working relationship we have with the Massachusetts School Building Authority. The Town has come together to address the needs of our students and I look forward to moving this project forward.”
The MSBA Designer Selection Panel has jurisdiction over the procurement of designers in connection with cities, towns, and regional school districts seeking funding from the MSBA for most public school construction projects. The designer selection process incorporates the procedures required by the General law of Massachusetts pertaining to designer services for public building construction. Three members of Amherst’s Elementary School Building Committee (Town Councilor and Committee Chair Cathy Schoen, Superintendent Mike Morris, and School Committee Member Ben Herrington) participated in the designer selection process.
DiNisco Design www.dinisco.com has completed many K-12 projects in the Commonwealth, including two prior projects which successfully joined two school communities together. DiNisco Design joins the Owner’s Project Manager, Anser Advisory Management LLC, on the consultant team for the Town’s elementary school building project.
It is anticipated that the Town will request a debt exclusion vote at an election for the Town’s share of the project. A project website is coming soon.