The entire Consentino School in Haverhill will be new, whether repaired or replaced; Costs over $125 million


Whether renovated and expanded or replaced, every inch of the Dr. Albert B. Consentino School needs to be upgraded at a cost of at least twice its cousin the Caleb Dustin Hunking School across the river.

Haverhill facilities manager Stephen D. Dorrance delivered the message last Thursday to school board members during a review of the school’s existing conditions contained in a 116-page report by Newburyport-based Dore + Whittier . Dorrance began by summarizing the purpose of the report.

“We are going to be making a bunch of decisions which will have a big impact on the design of the school, the finishes but more importantly the cost. We’re north of $125 million today and I think that number will go up,” he said.

Working with the Massachusetts School Building Authority, Haverhill weighs the pros and cons of modernizing the 1969 college versus completely replacing it.

Dorrance said while the decision is to retrofit the existing facility, eventually every square inch of the building will need to be upgraded. Indeed, he explained, although the building is now up to code, if renovation costs reach 30% of assessed value, the building must comply with 2022 building codes.

He outlined some of the areas that need to be included in a renovation, such as a fire suppression system, heating system, bathroom fixtures and plumbing, new electrical system throughout the building, the floors, the roof and even the walls of the building starting from the foundation. at the top.

“We trigger all seismic codes. This means that the existing building must be reinforced from the foundation, in its entirety. So it becomes very, very difficult and complicated,” Dorrance explained.

The report also addressed the expected disruptions to students and teachers in terms of noise, reduced space and even health issues.

“Think about the projects you have done at home. The disorder. The dirt and, in our case, the attenuation of the tiling that needs to be done. Mitigation means air quality samples and so on,” he said.

Committee members thanked Dorrance for the report and agreed that there was a lot to consider, including education equity across the city.

Dorrance’s slide presentation is here.


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