Capital Improvement Program Budget
ACPS Superintendent Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr. has proposed a fiscally responsible Capital Improvement Program budget for the next 10 years that acknowledges the tight economic climate while addressing ACPS’ most critical needs.
The FY 2022-2031 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) Budget proposes maintaining funds to support urgent technology, online textbooks and HVAC upgrades, while deferring several major modernization projects to a future date when the economy may be in better shape.
The superintendent is proposing reducing the City’s approved FY 2022 CIP for ACPS by $28.6 million to future years to better align with the City’s revenue expectations. This was originally allocated to The High School Project, although The High School Project completion timeline will not change. The superintendent is also proposing deferring the modernization of George Mason Elementary School and Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology by one year, and Matthew Maury Elementary School and the new school project by two years. The modernization of the ACPS Transportation facility will also be deferred by a year. The total proposed request for the next 10 years is $551,483,000.
As well as allowing ACPS to be fiscally responsible, the deferral of these large modernization projects will also allow ACPS additional planning time. Maintaining the original FY 2021-2030 schedule would have resulted in a budget that could not be achieved. In addition, fluctuations in enrollment this school year due to the pandemic means that ACPS elementary capacity needs are no longer as pressing as they were last year. ACPS will need to establish new refined enrollment predictions for the next 10 years and review all projects once these projections have been made.
The modernization of Douglas MacArthur Elementary School will continue on schedule. Demolition work is scheduled to begin in December 2020 and the building is on schedule to be completed in 2023. Initial anticipated budget shortfalls for the new Douglas MacArthur Elementary School building have narrowed to $2-4 million from an initial $5-7million. ACPS continues to utilize cost-reduction strategies to stay within the current budget for this project and thus will not request additional funding from the City to support completion. Reduction strategies under consideration include refining contingencies, revising space needed for extended learning areas, investigating options for furniture procurement and updating site layout. The superintendent’s proposed FY 2022 CIP includes $2 million to support the installation of utilities and solar panels required to meet net-zero energy, both which were not originally budgeted for in this project.
Major HVAC, kitchen and playground upgrades, plus planning for the displacement of the Minnie Howard field while construction takes place on that site, remain in the current proposed budget. However, all major non-capacity projects have been reviewed to ensure they are still needed at a time when budgets are tight.
The proposals align with each of the goals of the ACPS 2025 Strategic Plan: Equity for All, as well as the School Board CIP priorities for the next 10 years, which include building upgrades, such as HVAC, roof, and safety and security upgrades; compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Projects in the areas of transportation and playgrounds; modernizing ACPS facilities and increasing ACPS’ seat capacity; and planning for future projects which includes communications and engagement support. Textbook and technology upgrades are also funded through the CIP and are also School Board priorities.
Highlights of the Superintendent’s Proposed FY 2022-2031 Capital Improvement Program Budget
- The proposed budget for 2021-22 is $28.6 million less than originally approved for this year in last year’s CIP. These funds have been reallocated to future years in anticipation of an improved economic forecast.
- Approximately $1.5 million has been allocated to textbook and technology upgrades.
- Initial anticipated budget shortfalls for the new Douglas MacArthur Elementary School building have narrowed to $2-4 million from an initial $5-7million. ACPS continues to utilize cost-reduction strategies to stay within the current budget for this project and thus will not request additional funding from the City to support completion. Demolition work is scheduled to begin in December 2020, pending contract approval, and the building is on schedule to be completed in 2023.
- This coming 2021-22 school year, ACPS will be requesting $30 million for design and pre-construction work for the new facility at Minnie Howard, part of The High School Project.
- All projects have been reviewed and reflect recent and more accurate costs for building, sitework and structured parking at all capacity projects.
- The modernization of the ACPS Transportation Facility will be deferred by a year to better define the scope and the understanding of partnership with the City fleet.
- The modernization of George Mason Elementary School will be deferred by a year and construction funding will be condensed to FY 2025.
- The modernization of Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology will be deferred by a year and the project will be upgraded from a renovation to a new building.
- The building of a new school (600 students, grade level to be determined) will be deferred by two years to FY 2030-2031.
- The modernization of Matthew Maury Elementary School will be deferred by two years to FY 2032-2033.