Somerville High School Renovation & Expansion | 81 Highland Ave | Somerville

Blackbird

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I walked past the site today and saw two workers in a car with NH plates taking hits off a bowl before heading back in to the job. If a section of this building collapses at some point in the future, we have the Granite State to thank.
thats lit lmao
 

Life Coach Mike

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None of these are positives IMO.
Of course not, except the A/C. This is the way institutions build....not for those using the building as much as for those paying for it. They throw "amenities" into the mix to make users feel cared for; otherwise it's all about convenience, ease of maintenance and dealing with NE weather. Though apparently certain sections of certain windows do open to let in fresh air. That's a plus.
 

Money

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I walked past the site today and saw two workers in a car with NH plates taking hits off a bowl before heading back in to the job. If a section of this building collapses at some point in the future, we have the Granite State to thank.
If you spent any time inside the North Station Garage around noon during construction of the Hub, you'd reek of the sweet leaf.
 

RandomWalk

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They have started demolition on the old wings. It’s very visible looming over the GLX construction.
 

itchy

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Is it just me or does anyone else find the preposterously expensive ($200M, $300M, etc.) public schools being built across the Boston Metro area to be absolutely hideous? Feels like these will all be viewed as teardown candidates in a few decades.
 

George_Apley

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Is it just me or does anyone else find the preposterously expensive ($200M, $300M, etc.) public schools being built across the Boston Metro area to be absolutely hideous? Feels like these will all be viewed as teardown candidates in a few decades.
They definitely won't be teardowns. These buildings are, for the most part, built with growth in mind.
 

George_Apley

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Yeah. HVAC systems historically get scrimped on as well as typical fixtures and stuff like that. MSBA also got a lot stricter after the Newton North fiasco when the city basically kitted the school out with all sorts of extra bells and whistles at the state's expense. I'd say costs are definitely inflated and that munis aren't getting their money's worth, but it's like any publicly-funded project - it beggars cost inflation because money is guaranteed while also producing somewhat shoddy results due to lowest-bid rules.

It doesn't help that a lot of munis have spent decades stretching their school-buildings' lives well past the breaking point. But what else is new with regard to public infrastructure in America?
 

Ruairi

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Yeah. HVAC systems historically get scrimped on as well as typical fixtures and stuff like that. MSBA also got a lot stricter after the Newton North fiasco when the city basically kitted the school out with all sorts of extra bells and whistles at the state's expense. I'd say costs are definitely inflated and that munis aren't getting their money's worth, but it's like any publicly-funded project - it beggars cost inflation because money is guaranteed while also producing somewhat shoddy results due to lowest-bid rules.

It doesn't help that a lot of munis have spent decades stretching their school-buildings' lives well past the breaking point. But what else is new with regard to public infrastructure in America?
this is all fair enough but they could have worked a bit harder on the look of that huge wing from Highland ave. Maybe tie in some visual elements from the library. I know there are standardized designs and value engineering but the large wing just seems lazy. Still tho, better than what was there.
 

George_Apley

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this is all fair enough but they could have worked a bit harder on the look of that huge wing from Highland ave. Maybe tie in some visual elements from the library. I know there are standardized designs and value engineering but the large wing just seems lazy. Still tho, better than what was there.
Absolutely. The exterior aesthetics of school construction is one of the first things that is axed. Especially on a site with challenging engineering like SHS.
 

Vagabond

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Could always find the high school in winter by looking for the billowing black smoke out of that stack... The new field instead will be a welcome replacement, although it would have been nice to fit a full soccer field on the property instead of trekking all the way to Dilboy field, but I guess the GLX+16 will fix that.
 

kjdonovan

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SHS 1.JPG
SHS 2.JPG
For comparison, these show where we're going. One question though: They VEd the parking garage below the sports field ( where that graffitti-covered concrete retaining wall is now). So now I'm trying to figure out how it will work. Is the idea that it would be filled in as one giant block? The final retaining wall angles out into a space that is currently open air.
 

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