The Advanced Math and Science Academy Charter School (AMSA) broke ground this week on a multi-million dollar project to expand access to science and technology for its students and transform its 10-acre property into a campus environment.
The first phase now underway will add a new section of road at the back of the property located at 165, 199, and 201 Forest St. This will allow traffic to loop around the perimeter of the property, reducing congestion, eliminating back-up on Forest Street, and improving student safety. The center of campus will become pedestrian-friendly, mainly free of vehicles, with future landscape enhancements planned to add green space and enhance the campus feel.
The next phase will be the construction of a new 17,000-square-foot academic building to alleviate current classroom space restrictions and significantly add science lab spaces. AMSA’s campus currently consists of three former office buildings that have been converted into classrooms, cafeterias, and administrative suites. The new academic building will contain state-of-the-art classroom technology and laboratory equipment to improve learning opportunities. This phase also will include grading for a future multi-purpose gym/events facility to be built adjacent to the academic building.
AMSA is funding the project through a combination of school equity ($4 million), a tax-exempt bond issued by Boston Private and guaranteed through MassDevelopment ($24 million) and philanthropy ($2 million). The school has launched a capital campaign to raise the philanthropy portion. Support is needed to raise the $2 million.
Public charter schools, unlike traditional public school districts, must pay for their own buildings and facility improvements. Charter schools do not have access to state building funds and are dependent on private bank funding and fundraising for campus projects.