New Albany News

New school building

Architects to present design plan April 4


Architects from Moody-Nolan of Columbus are on track to present a new school building design plan to the New Albany community from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at the 2-5 elementary building.

The building will be designed for 1,200 students in grades 2 to 8 and include a gymnasium, said Superintendent April Domine.

It will be located between the 2-5 elementary building and the middle school cafeteria. District officials hope to break ground this spring and open the building by the fall of 2014.

The architects narrowed their design options to three for a March 20 public meeting, which 45 people attended to offer their feedback.

The first option designers presented was a two-story building oriented east to west that could include one-story sections for rooftop gardens.

The second was a one-story building with a square footprint that would occupy more of the land between the elementary and middle school.

The third option was a two-story building oriented north to south which would have more outdoor green spaces surrounding the building.

After the architects present the first draft of the design April 4, it will be reviewed by the school board, the superintendent's facilities committee and community members in a board work session at 6:30 p.m. Monday, April 8, in the Jefferson Room at New Albany High School.

Domine said along with adding a new building, the district will rework the elementary and middle school bus loops and drop-off zones.

Dick McBride, president of the Edge Group of Columbus, said he is working with Moody-Nolan on the site planning.

McBride said the district might need to move the secondary elementary entrance north of the 2-5 gymnasium to align with Chatham Green Drive.

Buses could use that access and drop students in a bus loop built north of the new building and north of the elementary gymnasium. Drop-off zones could be added north of the elementary gymnasium, as well.

McBride said athletics fields would be displaced with the construction of a new bus loop but could be replaced farther north of the campus on school district-owned land. He said parking would be included.

Planners have not yet found a solution to redesign the middle school bus loop and drop-off area.

The new building constructions and site improvements will be funded by a 2.59-mill bond issue to generate $45.1 million that local voters approved last November.

The New Albany-Plain Local school board on March 18 approved an agreement with Moody-Nolan for $2,008,637 for design and construction oversight.

The board also approved a contract for Harrison Planning Group of Columbus for $300,356.92 for working as the district's representative to Moody-Nolan and as the district's representative on the construction site.

Both contracts will be paid with levy funds.

The board also received a $33,750 estimate from Kleingers and Associates, a civil engineering firm from Columbus, for a boundary and topographic survey. Underground utility maps could cost $1,500 to $5,600 more.