Work on new Portola Valley schools classrooms to begin this month | June 4, 2021 | Almanac | Almanac Online |


News - June 4, 2021

Work on new Portola Valley schools classrooms to begin this month

by Angela Swartz

Construction will kick off this summer at two Portola Valley schools, funded by a $49.5 million bond measure passed in 2018.

District officials held virtual community meetings last week to answer questions about the upcoming Measure Z renovations, repairs and construction of new classroom buildings at Ormondale and Corte Madera schools.

Ormondale should be ready for students around August 2022, and Corte Madera is set to be complete around December 2022, said Adam Lint, director of bond and facilities for the district during one of the meetings.

"We're right on track with beginning construction," he said.

Temporary classrooms have been installed on the campuses and there will be groundbreaking ceremonies at both schools on Monday, June 7, according to Superintendent Roberta Zarea. Construction begins June 14 and will continue into the fall.

Construction noise will be allowed between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., according to a district presentation. There will be traffic flaggers and signage, and no deliveries will be permitted during pickup and drop-off to reduce congestion at the schools, said DJ Halbert, project manager at RGM Kramer, the district's construction management company.

Flood lights will not be on at night, Halbert noted.

Ormondale Principal Lynette Hovland said next school year it might be educational for project managers to update students about what work is being done during the week.

The district shared new classroom designs with community members in November 2019. The buildings will aesthetically match the surrounding residential neighborhoods, with gabled roofs, large clear windows and lots of natural light, Brent McClure, principal at CAW Architects, which is designing the new classrooms, told The Almanac at the time.

Teachers will be able to mix indoor and outdoor learning on the newly designed campuses, directly connecting students with nature, he said. Classrooms will be organized around a central atrium at Corte Madera, the district's grades 4-8 school, and workers will build a deck which will overlook the Frog Pond. The deck could be used for lessons on the watershed and seasons, as well as bird-watching, McClure said. Superintendent Roberta Zarea noted that the Frog Pond is not currently used as part of classroom lessons.

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Email Staff Writer Angela Swartz at [email protected]


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