Built from the ground up, the new Forest Park Middle School features a two-story layout to accommodate up to 1,350 students at full capacity, serving students in grades 6-8. The building houses 42 traditional classrooms in addition to designated spaces for music, art, consumer education and technical education classes. The building was designed to compliment the surrounding neighborhood and include ample green space.
This new middle school is equipped with modern necessities – secure entry and flexible and appropriate learning environments to best serve the students’ educational needs of today. The new design has a built-in plan for possible expansion, if needed.
Even though it was new construction that did not have an occupied space, the project faced other challenges; one in particular – the building needed to be ready for the 2019 school year and leave plenty of time for the teachers and staff to move in and get their new spaces ready for students. The other was keeping the cost within the referendum budget.
Both of these challenges were solved by prefabricating the exterior wall panels. Doing so saved one month on schedule allowing the building to be enclosed in three short weeks which also avoided winter construction work and weather conditions. The project also came in under budget, the referendum value approved by voters was $43 million and the final construction cost was $40.1 million.