The fate of the Dr. Albert B. Consentino School—whether full replacement, new construction or a combination—is ultimately a local decision.
Following a public presentation this past Wednesday, reviewing renovation and/or replacement options for the 1969-era middle school, architects gave another overview at Thursday night’s Haverhill School Committee meeting. Dore and Whittier architectural firm Principal Donald M. Walter said the final design is up to community and the school building committee. For that reason, he said, he hopes Haverhill residents provide input throughout the decision-making process. He explained next steps.
“All the options will go to the MSBA (Massachusetts School Building Authority). We hope to narrow that down to five, six, seven which are considered options that should be explored further, which will take us through the spring which will lead to the one option which will become your preferred schematic that we will advance further,” he told the Committee.
Options are based on how many students will be attending the school. Maria F. Donovan, project manager for the Newburyport-based firm, said the state requires plans be submitted based on three enrollment figures.
“These are with all different circumstances: 715 students, 985 students and 1,080 students. Seven hundred fifteen is essentially the current situation, 985 will be if Tilton Upper remains in service and 1,080 will be if Tilton Upper is not in service,” she said.
Donovan said the 715 option in unlikely to be adequate for future requirements. The option for 985 students would include renovation as well as new construction and the building could be two or three stories high depending on how much green space is desired. The plans for a 1,080-student building would be similar but include an additional floor.
Donovan said cost estimates for all options, including variables for each, should be available by next week to be submitted to the Massachusetts School Building Authority on Jan. 7.