August 21, 2015
By Stephanie West
The New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) will continue to make substantial infrastructure investments over the next four years, according to its recently amended 2015-2019 Capital Plan. The Plan calls for $13.5 billion in new commitments and is approximately $2 billion larger than the 2010-2014 plan.
The Amended Plan is broken down into three broad categories: Capacity Expansion, Capital Investment, and Mandated Programs.
The SCA will spend approximately $3.45 billion to create 32,600 new seats during the plan period. The funding will be used to design and construct 37 smaller primary schools, 21 larger buildings for middle schools and high school. Brooklyn and Queens will be the largest recipients of new seats. The Mayor's signature Universal Pre-K initiative will receive $520 million to build or lease space to house an additional 6,800 pre-K seats.
The SCA will commit nearly $5 billion for enhancements and improvements to existing facilities. This includes more than $1 billion to rehabilitate exterior buildings. Another $686 million is included to make important improvements to cafeterias, labs, lunchrooms, libraries, and bathrooms. The City also plans to commit $650 to upgrade high-speed networks and other computer technology.
The Department of Education has set aside nearly $4 billion to address mandates, insurance, and other administrative obligations. There is an additional $663 in new money to pay for unfunded costs from the prior five year plan.
"The School Construction Authority has produced a straightforward, common sense budget for the City's massive school system," said Building Congress President Richard T. Anderson. "The de Blasio Administration has given the SCA the resources it needs to ensure existing buildings continue to serve school children well, while also making real progress toward reducing the shortage of school seats driven by the City's continuing population growth."