August 8, 2019
Contact: Edye Maier (609-858-2909)

New Jersey Schools Development Authority Celebrates Construction Milestone
with Beam Signing Event in Passaic City

PASSAIC, NJ – The New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA) joined Passaic City School District students, State and local officials today at a ceremonial beam signing event for the new Dayton Avenue Educational Campus. Today’s event highlights the construction progress of the facility, with the steel structure nearly complete.

The Dayton Avenue Educational Campus project will consist of the construction of an approximately 448,000 square-foot, four-story educational campus that includes four school facilities located in a unified structure with shared central facilities. The campus is designed to educate a maximum of approximately 3,000 students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 8.

“The addition of these four new schools will be transformative to the educational infrastructure available to thousands of students in Passaic,”

said SDA Interim CEO Manuel Da Silva. “I am honored to stand alongside our District, State and local partners as we celebrate the construction progress of this important project that will provide educational spaces where students can learn and grow for generations to come.”

Each school facility will include a complement of instructional spaces, large group spaces, specialized learning spaces as well as administrative and support areas.

  • The Abraham Lincoln School (Pre-K program) will include: 28 classrooms, three specialized rooms and a courtyard play area.
  • The Mahatma Gandhi Elementary School program includes: 33 general classrooms, five self-contained special education classrooms, three science labs, media center, music room and gym.
  • The Ellen Ochoa Gifted and Talented Academy (Magnet School program) will include: 28 general classrooms, three self-contained special educational classrooms, three science labs, art room, dance studio, vocal music room, media center, two Teach to One Learning Areas and cafeteria.
  • The Muhammad Ali School (Middle School Program) will include: 27 general classrooms, six self-contained special education classrooms, three science labs, four project labs, three Teach to One Learning Areas, gym, cafeteria as well as classrooms dedicated to the arts.

“Passaic Public Schools is happy to celebrate the beam signing of the Dayton Avenue Education Complex,” said Passaic Schools Superintendent Pablo Muñoz. “This is a special event that helps to highlight the extraordinary progress and construction of four new Schools here in Passaic. When these schools open in 2022, they will provide our students with state-of-the-art classrooms that support active and engaged learning preparing them to be successful citizens in our nation. Our Board of Education thanks all of our partners that have made this day possible. We are truly thankful for the ongoing support of the Schools Development Authority, Interim CEO Manny Da Silva, Assemblyman Gary Schaer of the New Jersey State Legislature, Mayor Hector Lora and our dedicated City Council for working to give our children state-of -the-art schools, which will truly make a difference in the lives of generations to come.”

With the steel structure now complete, work to enclose the building (exterior walls, masonry, roofing, windows) will proceed until the third quarter of 2020. The project is anticipated for opening to students in September 2022.

The school is being built using the design-build approach. This delivery method allows the SDA to utilize a single contract with one firm for both design and construction of a school facilities project. The design-build method also allows for some design and construction activities to proceed concurrently through phased advancement, an approach that potentially allows for improvement upon the original overall schedule.

Terminal Construction Corp. of Wood Ridge is the design-build contractor. They are working with RSC Architects of Hackensack on the design. Gilbane Building Company of New Brunswick/EPIC Management Inc. of Piscataway is the construction manager. The total estimated project cost is $240.9 million.

The SDA has invested nearly $193 million in completed projects in Passaic City alone since the inception of the school construction program. This will be the fourth new facility in Passaic completed by the SDA, after the opening of the $55.9 million Sonia Sotomayor Elementary School this September.

About the New Jersey Schools Development Authority

The SDA is the State agency responsible for fully funding and managing the new construction, modernization and renovation of school facilities projects in 31 SDA Districts. Its current portfolio of active projects is valued at approximately $2 billion – including the Capital Project portfolio, emergent projects and Regular Operating District grants. Since the program’s inception, the SDA has provided funding for and management oversight of more than 850 completed school facilities projects in SDA Districts and has executed more than 5,400 grants for Regular Operating Districts throughout the State of New Jersey. For more information about the SDA, please visit our website at: or follow us on social media at: Facebook; Instagram; LinkedIn; or Twitter.