Submitted Questions

Below are answers to questions submitted by community members.

If you have a question please feel free to submit it here

Q. What is the cost per square foot for the new construction and how does it compare to commercial and residential costs?
A. The construction costs will be about $170 per square foot.

Q. How much can the student population increase by without needing to add additional capacity to these new buildings?
A. The new buildings could absorb at least 5-7% without any additional construction.

Q. Are we accounting for Quincy’s shifting population demographics?
A. We will do our best to account for population demographics changing but current population centers appear to remain relatively fixed moving forward.

Q. Will new schools make Quincy more attractive to business?
A. Employers have told us repeatedly that they value a high quality public school system. It is a critical component in attracting top talent and is a key factor in determining whether to invest in Quincy as a community.

Q. Will the new buildings be LEED certified?
A. We will aim for the features of a LEED certified building but at this point we are not sure whether LEED certification

Q. How many classrooms per grade per school?
A. 4 classrooms per grade in each elementary school.

Q. What is the schedule for construction?
A. The design phase would last until the Spring. The QHS addition would start in Summer as would the new Monroe building. These are 15 month construction projects. During the school year, the students would not be affected at QHS. The next school would start 6 months after Monroe and each subsequent school roughly 6 months after that.

Q. How much of the $52.5 million health and life safety spending was site improvement, such as paving and sidewalks?
A. About 4%.

Q. Are any of the existing schools on the historic registry?
A. Only Washington Elementary School is listed as a “Contributing” structure in the Quincy Northwest Historic District. Madison Elementary is identified by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency but its status is listed as “Undetermined”. Berrian Elementary School is not listed at all. None of the District’s Schools are listed as part of the Quincy Preservation Commission’s sixty local landmarks.

Q. If so will it affect the ability to sell such properties?
A. Designation as a Historic Landmark does not affect our ability to sell any property.

Q. What possible usage would any existing facilities being abandoned have for the school district?
A. It is the intention of the District to sell any property that will not serve another purpose for the District. The District has explored at several options including using Ellington for a District Maintenance/Transportation facility, other schools could be used for one of our Alternate Education programs, move/expand our Early Childhood program, move the Board of Education Offices. Monroe and Baldwin are scheduled to be torn-down as part of the new building program. Any decision will be determined based on what is most cost effective, basically what would it cost to re-purpose the structure and what would be the long-0term operating costs.

Q. There has surely been research into sights for new facilities, can those be shared? I believe this would help relieve the anxiety of a lot of people.
A. The District has looked at numerous sites, unfortunately, no firm commitments have been secured. We are working with the City of Quincy and other agencies to identify potential sites. But, no official action has taken place. It is our goal to locate the new schools as close as possible to population centers in the northwest and southwest portions of the community.

Q. If the referendum is passed what is the timeline for construction for each site? You may not have anything in stone on this but sharing this info may help relieve the anxiety of voters who are on the fence.
A. Construction of a new elementary school takes approximately 15 to 18 months. Additions and renovations to QHS will take about the same amount of time. Construction could start as soon as this summer on QHS and the Monroe Site. We estimate that we can stagger the start of new projects every six months without straining the construction forces in the Quincy Area.

The QHS and the New School at the Monroe site would be ready for the start of the 2016-17 School Year. The next New Elementary would be available for a mid-year move or could wait and open with the third new school starting with the 2017-2018 School Year. The fourth school would be ready for a mid-year move also in 2017-2018. During construction of the New School at the Baldwin site, students would have to be temporarily located at a another school building that was recently vacated and then move in for the start of the  2018-2019 School Year.

Q. Are the monies from the anticipated sell of existing properties being figured into the acquisition and building cost already or will it be an added bonus to the paying down of construction debt or can it not be used for that?
A. There is no other money figured into the construction program except funds received through the sale of bonds. Any money received from the sale of property could be used for any “educational purpose”, including paying down the construction debt, repairs and renovations to the facilities we are keeping, technology, or other purposes as considered by the Board.

Q. Will there be penalties and rewards written into  the construction contracts for late/early completion?
A. Nothing has been determined at this time.

Q. What are the anticipated sell prices of each of the existing facilities?
A. The last “school” to sell in Quincy was the old Emerson School that was owned and operated by the Quincy Park District. I believe the sale price was about $105,000. Using this as our gauge, I would suspect we would get approximately the same for our buildings.

Q. Is it possible to publish a list of the anticipated repairs, improvements, ETC… That existing properties are anticipated needing over the next 15 years or so that would tally what I believe was stated as $66 million?
A. The anticipated  repairs that will be need to be made our based on previous work completed in the district and an estimate of work that might be need based upon Life Expectancy of major building components, e.g. Roofs, HVAC Steams, Exterior Walls, etc. WE are working on developing an easily understood list of this work.

Q. How many classrooms for each grade will be in each proposed new school? For example at new facility X there will be 5 class rooms for each grade level.
A. The new elementary school design is what we consider a Four Section Building. There will be four sections or classes of each grade, 4 kindergarten classes, 4 First Grade, etc. . The capacity of the building is based on 25 students per class or a total of 600. There are also additional classrooms and instructional spaces to accommodate our special needs students.

Q. Using this years enrollment numbers what would the average number of students per classroom would there be in the new facilities for K – 5?
A. Based upon our current K-5 enrollment of 3,150, with a total of 120 classrooms, the average number of students per classroom is 26.25.

Q. Will emanate domain be used to get property needed in populated areas in the populated areas of the city?
A. We do not anticipate using emanate domain to acquire the needed sites.

Q. If new sites are all on the edges of town will this effect transportation cost annually? If so has this figure been included in what is being called an annual savings?
A. The transportation savings that we anticipate is based on the number of route we need to run versus the distance of the routes. By going to the new grade configuration we move from having to have four different tiers of bussing to three different tiers, eliminating approximately 10 bus routes.

Q. Why can the existing facilities at Monroe and Baldwin not be used and simply added too?
A. The committee looked at a multitude of options, including doing additions and renovations to existing schools. Even by doing this, it still did not correct some of the current issues with those schools, e.g. small classroom sizes, small gym/cafeteria spaces, aging infrastructure, etc. To correct many of these issue would bring the price tag close to the cost of a new building.