Rogers Park Montessori School is located in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood and serves children ages two to 14. Berglund constructed the new 47,000-sqft building that features 17 classrooms, a resource center and library, an IHSA-compliant gymnasium, a multi-purpose lunchroom, 2.4 acres of green space and a green roof system — all crucial design elements. The new building allows Rogers Park Montessori to accommodate up to 350 students, including middle school classes for children ages 12 to 14. Designed for the 21st century, the finished construction integrated coordinated installation of owner-furnished systems, including security, card access and CCTV systems as well as voice data & wireless technology.
The K-8 school is located on a tight urban site contained by buildings and a set of railroad tracks, dictating a narrow plan. A collaborative design/build methodology was utilized to quickly value-engineer the original design to conform to the owner’s budgetary requirements. Utilizing progressive cost modeling, six successive master construction budgets were successively generated, with construction costs more the $2 million lower than the original estimate.
Safety, quality and schedule were all top priorities. If a condition arose that came in conflict with one priority, that work activity was analyzed to rebalance the three priorities. Berglund Construction’s resources were effectively allocated to address safety and operational considerations. Protecting the public, the workers and the environment were always a priority whenever activities were planned.
Berglund Construction always put the safety of its employees first. With a full-time safety director to monitor all activities on the jobsite and a full time loss control staff the Rogers Park Montessori School Project was a success for both the owner and the neighboring community. Safety huddles were performed daily with all workers and crews, Toolbox Talks were completed weekly with a safety topic chosen being relevant to the work being performed. Logistically, this project was presented with the challenge of building adjacent to active train tracks.
The impact of this project on the community is immeasurable. School officials said the new facility is an excellent opportunity to offer quality education options to families who wish to stay in the city. In addition, the school offers various programs to foster interaction with the parents of the students. One such program is the Garden Committee. Generous space was allocated for parents and students to grow an organic garden on school property. Berglund created an open space concept with design features allowing the children to feel comfortable in their learning environment.