- Two multimillion dollar Baltimore elementary school replacement projects are underway as part of the city's $1.1 billion construction and renovation plan, which will result in 28 new or renovated schools, the Baltimore Business Journal reported.
- Both Fort Worthington Elementary-Middle School ($33 million) and Frederick Elementary School ($27 million) are expected to open in fall 2017, and the Maryland Stadium Authority, which is overseeing much of the overall school construction program, said it will break ground on a third, Lyndhurst Elementary School ($40 million), later this month.
- The MSA will manage seven of the 11 schools scheduled to begin construction this year, with Baltimore City Public Schools to oversee construction of the rest. Seventeen schools will join the overhaul program next year, and all schools are scheduled for completion by 2020.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan called the Fort Worthington school project a "transformation for the neighborhood" and, of the program overall, said, "It looks like it's working," according to the Business Journal. When complete, the school will see more than a doubling of its previous student enrollment capacity and will feature wireless technology, outdoor learning areas, art and media rooms, a gym, performance stage and flexible classrooms. MSA officials said the first three school projects have already generated almost 90 jobs.
According to the Memorandum of Understanding between the Maryland Stadium Authority (MSA), city of Baltimore, Baltimore City Board of School Commissioners and Interagency Committee on School Construction, the MSA financed the $1.1 billion school construction and renovation initiative with revenue bonds.
Other school districts have recently embarked on plans to modernize or replace their schools as well. Earlier this year, the Washington, DC, Department of General Services gave general contractor Skanska a contract for the $72 million modernization of Lafayette Elementary, the District's largest school. The company also won a $77 million contract for the replacement of three elementary schools and the renovation of five high schools in Cincinnati. All of the schools, including the elementary school in DC, are shooting for LEED certification.
New York City has also emerged as a leader in school construction. An April New York Building Congress analysis of Dodge Data & Analytics information found that New York City experienced $3 billion worth of school construction or rehabilitation activity in 2015, up 83% from 2014 and twice the average amount spent between 2010 and 2014. The NYBC said New York City also tripled spending for colleges and universities between 2014 and 2015 and increased its spending on post-secondary facilities four-fold between 2010 and 2014.