Construction Begins on New School

Work has begun to turn a once Lutheran Church at 601 Dolores Street into the Children’s Day School Middle School Campus (grades 5-8).  Molly Huffman, Head of the CDS reports in a  letter to the community,  “I believe, this will give us a first class facility for teaching and learning that respects the wonderful history of 601 Dolores and its surrounding neighbors.”  Last used as a private residence, the fate of this beautiful and historic property was the cause of much speculation. Dolores Park Works was relived that the CDS stepped forward with an offer on the $8 million dollar property. It has been almost two years since we reported that the SF Planning Commission had approved the use conversion for 601 Dolores.

All work should be completed by mid-February 2015 with the first classes in the building starting September 2015.
The historic "castle on the park" - now becoming a middle school!

The historic “castle on the park” – now becoming a middle school!

Construction is estimated to take approximately 11-12 months and will begin in earnest the first week of March. Some preliminary work began last Friday. During the month of February, there will more pre-construction work. Then, for approximately 8-10 weeks, the General Contractor, Plant Construction Company, will dismantle certain areas within the building so that a new structural system can be installed.  The scope of work includes a structural/seismic upgrade of the building and renovations to transform the ground floor into the new entry, with classrooms, offices and circulation.  The current main floor will have a large assembly in the former nave and classrooms on the south end.  The mezzanine will become the third floor and contain classrooms and a student study area.  The roof will have planting beds and benches for students to use when tending the plantings and for lunch. The full schedule follows:

1.  By mid-February:

·      Salvage of existing fixtures (appliances), cabinetry and wood burning stoves

·      Designation of street space for construction parking beginning Monday, February 10

2. By the end of February:

·      Site fencing installed around the perimeter of the building, including the sidewalk

·      Removal of two street trees on 19th Street (to be replaced at the end of construction)

·      Removal and proper disposal of garage floor surface

·      Installation of jobsite trailer, within the construction fencing

·      Installation of scaffolding at the exterior of the building 

3.  Starting early March:

Construction will begin. For approximately 16 weeks, subcontractors will be working inside the building at the lower level excavating around the perimeter so that new footings and grade beams can be installed to support the new structural system. Soil and other materials will be removed on a regular basis throughout this phase. These materials will be loaded into trucks and hauled away to appropriate recycle and dump sites. Some of the soil will be stockpiled and used to backfill the excavation. 

In addition, the utilities serving the building will be upgraded.  This work will be done in conjunction with the San Francisco Water Department and PG&E, and will involve connections to main services located in the street, sidewalk and nearby power poles.

 When construction begins, you will notice an up-tick of activity and noise. Please note that construction will be managed in accordance with City of San Francisco guidelines, procedures and codes. Working hours will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  If necessary, due to scheduling, work may take place occasionally on Saturday. 

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About Robert Brust

Dolores Park Works Co-founder