HOLDEN, Mass. — The Mountview School Building Committee unveiled the preliminary design for Holden's new middle school project Tuesday, with the larger facility to be built behind the current school on Shrewsbury Street.
The preliminary concepts for the new 128,000-square-foot school, which would be built behind the existing 91,000-square-foot facility, were presented by project architect Lamoureaux Pagano Associates of Shrewsbury.
Although the concept is not final, the finished product should be close to the design in the images, according to building committee Chairman Paul Challenger.
The new building would be 40 percent larger. The current Mountview building is designed to serve 600 students, and 764 students are projected to attend in 2012-13.
The new three-story building is designed to meet state guidelines for an 800-student school, with each floor dedicated to one grade level and consist of two wings for academic teams. Each wing would have five classrooms and a science lab as well as a pod that would serve as a common area.
Each classroom would be 100 to 150 square feet larger, giving more space for students and more room for teachers to store supplies, Challenger said.
Unlike the current building, the new school would have windows in every classroom, allowing for more natural light, he said. The new school would also have solar panels on its roof, which would provide about half of the building's energy use during the winter.
"In the summer, we ought to be able to sell that energy back to the grid," said Challenger.
"We'll also have a better gymnasium that can actually hold decent-size events in, and the cafeteria will be the right size so they can have only two lunch periods a day rather than four."
If the Massachusetts School Building Authority approves the project in April, it could cost-share 50 percent to 54 percent of the project with Holden.
Holden's voters would then have to vote on whether to move forward through a ballot election at a special town meeting in spring.
If all goes according to plan, Challenger said construction could begin in spring 2014, with students in the school by the following fall.
To learn more about the new Mountview Middle School, visit the committee's website.