Elementary School Reuse Committee

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Introduction


The City of Easthampton is in the process of preparing for the reuse of three elementary school properties.  In January 2020, the Easthampton Downtown Strategic Plan was completed and provides strategies to enhance economic development opportunities in the Downtown and strengthen the Cottage Street and Union Street corridor as a commercial center and a creative heart of the community. The Plan establishes coordinated vision and action items for the Downtown including redevelopment opportunities, shared parking, and pedestrian enhancements.  


Elementary School Reuse Committee


The downtown planning process identified next steps to form an elementary school reuse committee (Steering Committee) and to prepare and seek Requests for Proposals from developers.  The general role of the steering committee will be to: 

 

  • Participate in scheduled meetings (approximately 1 per month for approximately 1.5 years) to review and provide feedback on the RFP to be developed by the Project Team.

  • Share their insight on the opportunities and challenges on pertinent topics based on your knowledge of the City, Downtown and the different constituencies and stakeholders you represent.

  • Act as a liaison between different committee, boards or organization you represent and share the feedback from these forums with the Project Team.

  • Prepare a written recommendation to the City Council and Mayor of Easthampton with regard to the nature and extent of the RFP seeking the most community benefit for the City of Easthampton.

 

The current membership for the committee is:

  • Joe McCoy - Chair

  • Patrick Brough - Council on Aging

  • Chris Korzcak - Economic Development and Industrial Committee (EDIC)

  • Brad Riley - Affordable Fair Housing Partnership

  • Tracey Harris - Historical Commission

  • Pamela Means - Resident

  • Lauren Clark - Resident


School re-use RFP strategy


The Downtown Plan establishes a community-based vision for the future reuse of Center, Pepin and Maple Street elementary schools.  Chapter 5 of the Downtown Plan includes a baseline evaluation of each building, summarizes community feedback on desired uses, school reuse scenarios, and establishes building reuse criteria.  


The next phase of the project is to examine available information about the schools, consider realistic funding sources and development options, create RFP criteria, and to prepare an RFP that will result in the highest likelihood for redevelopment of the buildings and/or school sites.  The RFP will be sent to City Council, then to the Mayor before it is released.  The committee will use existing and pending data and research to and provide all the information for public review, including for review by City Council, residents, and potential developers.  


The timeline is subject to change but currently seeks to release an RFP in late spring/summer 2022 and intends to coincide with the schools becoming vacant as of June 2022. 


Project information

  1. Memo on Disposition Process, dated September 15, 2021
  2. “Draft” white paper on precedent (information about other similar RFP’s)
  3. One Stop For Growth Grant application (City is seeking $100,000 for due diligence)(Submitted July 14, 2021; status is pending)
  4. Maple Elementary School Preliminary Design Program, December 16, 2016 (NOTE: this is the entire document used to submit to the Massachusetts School Building Authority.  It is a very large file) 
  5. Maple Elementary School Preliminary Design Program (excerpt of existing conditions evaluations for Maple, Center & Pepin

Watch the meetings!

September 15, 2021 (first meeting).  Click here or the image to view: https://youtu.be/egr6QuxgNTI


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9152021 presentation
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To view the Downtown Strategic Plan, review community meeting materials, or watch videos, click here: Plan Downtown Easthampton (plandowntown-easthampton.com)

Housing Production Plan

To view the Housing Production Plan, click here: Easthampton HPP 2021-2025 (easthamptonma.gov)