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Alternative financing plan will enable Prince George's County (Md.) district to build 6 schools

Jan. 12, 2021
The district has entered into a public-private partnership with a consortium of companies that will design, build and maintain the schools.

The Prince George's County (Md.) school district is moving forward with an alternative financing arrangement that will enable it to build six schools in the next two years.

The district says in a news release that it has entered into an agreement with Prince George's County Education & Community Partners—a consortium of several companies: Fengate Asset Management, Gilbane Development Company, Gilbane Building Company, Stantec and Honeywell.

The companies will provide development, design, construction and maintenance services.

The Public-Private Partnership Agreement calls for the consortium to deliver six new schools to the district by 2023. It will be responsible for the maintenance and renewal of the schools for 30 years.

Prince George's County describes the initiative as a first-of-its kind delivery model for a U.S. public school system that is designed to build new schools faster, and cut project time in half with lower construction costs.

“It is vital that we continuously invest in our students’ future and today’s announcement will allow us to do just that,” says Monica Goldson, the district's Chief Executive Officer. “Throughout this process, Prince George’s County Public Schools has remained committed to our goal of supporting our students at every stage of their educational experience, ensuring they have every tool needed for success. We cannot afford to wait another 10 years to provide our students, teachers and communities with new state-of-the-art facilities."

More than 136,000 are enrolled in Prince George's County Public Schools, and more than half of the district's 208 schools are over 50 years old.

Four Prince George's County middle schools will be rebuilt—Drew-Freeman, Hyattsville, Kenmoor and Walker Mill. In addition, the consortium will build a new middle school and K-8 school in the Adelphi and southern areas of the county.

The district and the consortium also announced the creation of a $1 million endowed fund supporting scholarships, student internships, mentoring opportunities and apprenticeships valued at $4.7 million, as part of the district's Alternative Construction Finance Program.

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