NYC earmarks record $19.4B for school-related construction

Dive Brief:

  • The Department of Education and the New York City School Construction Authority plan to allocate $19.4 billion worth of funding for school-related construction in New York City through 2024, according to the most recently released capital plan.
  • That amount, split into three different funding buckets consisting of new construction, existing school upgrades and compliance requirements, represents the largest funding plan for the city’s schools ever, according to the NYCSCA. The previous 2015 to 2019 plan totaled $15.9 billion.
  • The NYCSCA, created in 1988 by the New York State Legislature to construct and renovate educational facilities in the five boroughs, will award contracts to only prequalified general contractors. To prequalify, firms must submit a complete online prequalification application and be approved to do business with the NYCSCA.

Dive Insight:

An expected surge in student enrollment over the next decade, as well as an outdated stock of school buildings, pushed the NYCSCA to boost its school-related construction funding, according to a spokesperson.

For example, the NYCSCA expects needing more than 6,200 new seats in Queens high schools alone by 2026, according to The American Institute of Architects.

The $19.4 billion capital plan contains three major categories: 

  • Capacity ($7.95 billion): All initiatives that create new school facilities, including $5.52 billion for new seats, $605 million for class size reduction, $267 million for transportable classroom units, $806 million for facility replacements and $756 million for early education initiatives.
  • Capital investment ($7.94 billion): Programs that improve existing schools, including $3.65 billion for building upgrades and $2.85 billion for school enhancement, such as technology, accessibility and bathroom-related projects.
  • Mandate programs ($3.47 billion): Any project that enables schools to comply with new requirements or existing local laws, namely elements such as remediation, building code compliance, insurance and emergencies.

All new school buildings included in the funding will be all electric, according to the NYCSCA. Officials will prioritize projects in communities disproportionately burdened by climate change and environmental injustice.

Comments are closed.