September 05, 2019
Contact: Edye Maier (609-858-2909)

SDA Celebrates the Opening of the New Sonia Sotomayor School No. 21

TRENTON, NJ –The New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA) joined Passaic School District leaders and students as well as State and local officials at a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Sonia Sotomayor School No. 21 today, one of four new facilities opened by the SDA this September.

“The opening of the new Sonia Sotomayor Elementary School is another step forward in SDA’s efforts to address the significant overcrowding needs that exist within the Passaic City school district,” said SDA Interim CEO Manuel Da Silva. “Our ongoing partnership with Passaic School District and local officials has resulted in the consistent delivery of multiple educational facilities that will provide thousands of new seats to the students of Passaic. We are committed to providing students with access to the innovative and state-of-the-art schools that will help facilitate their academic success.”

The new Sonia Sotomayor Elementary School is a 105,000 square foot facility designed to educate approximately 700 students in Kindergarten to 8th grade. The school includes 30 general classrooms, five small group instruction classrooms, two science classrooms, instrumental and vocal music rooms, an art room, a multipurpose room with a stage, a gymnasium, a cafeteria, and a media center.

The new school was constructed on the SDA-acquired Leonard Place site and is located across the street from another SDA-built school, the Passaic Gifted and Talented Academy, which opened to students in 2015. The SDA is also currently constructing the $240.9 million Dayton Avenue Educational Campus in Passaic.

As a result of SDA’s commitment to building energy-efficient buildings that take the surrounding environment into consideration, this school was built to be LEED (United States Green Building Council – Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified.

The school was built using a design-build approach. This method differs from the traditional approach in that SDA contracts with one firm for both the design and construction of a school facility project. Dobco, Inc. was the design-build contractor, and worked in partnership with DiCara/Rubino Architects on the design. The project was managed by Epic Management, Inc. The total estimated SDA project cost for the new school is $55.9 million.

The SDA has invested nearly $193 million in completed projects in Passaic City alone since the inception of the school construction program.

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.