School District Spells Out Stella Maris Delays

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The former Stella Maris Regional School will likely open as the Sag Harbor School District’s new early childhood education facility in March of 2019, rather than its original target of January, school officials announced Monday.

Administrators attributed the change to the architectural review procedure by the New York State Education Department — a process that has been blamed for cost increases in other recent Sag Harbor School District construction projects as well as in the Bridgehampton School District’s major expansion and renovation project.

“I’m not looking at a two-month slowdown as anything that’s going to increase our costs,” Superintendent Katy Graves said Wednesday. “Coming out in the next couple of weeks, it will probably be a benefit to the district. Contractors are not as busy. They’ll be wanting that kind of work. We’re not going to be up against all that heavy traffic.”

During Monday’s school board meeting, she said the goal is to move the prekindergarten classes in March and open the rest of the space to a day care provider under a lease in July.

The community approved $10.23 million in May of 2016 to buy the building and renovate it, with $5.9 million for construction costs and $1.04 million for soft costs such as architectural and engineering fees.

Asbestos abatement has already been completed at the building. Marcus DaSilva, whose previous title of “school maintenance leader” was elevated Monday to “assistant plant facilities administrator” pending the completion of his 12-week probationary period with the district, said Monday vendors have been chosen for technology and security systems and the playground at Stella Maris. A public survey to help determine a new name for the building is planned for the end of September.

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