Before*(about March 2020) | After (July 2020)
Mike Hale, Director of DPW, and Jeff Destino, VP at O’Maley, reviewed top to-do list items at O’Maley back in January 2020, before Covid-19 hit. They also consulted with the principal and teachers, mentioning Ms. Crosby as one point of contact. The third floor (7th grade wing) was deemed “the most tired”. DPW slated work for February and April vacations with more lined up for the summer. When the pandemic closures ensued, many of these projects were ready to roll. Essential improvements and remodel efforts inside O’Maley include a wide assortment of interventions and upgrades by the DPW team: floor cleaning/refinishing/buffing (perpetual! a la Golden Gate Bridge painting); fresh coat of paint in various classrooms (in consultation with the teachers); wall repairs; 8 bathroom renovations; custom murals with hand painting by Jason Burroughs; built-in benches and high top counter; remodel of the resource officer’s room; renovation of one of the teacher lounges; and new classroom clocks.
About those classroom clocks. Ralph B. O’Maley (O’Maley) school was built ca.1972 and first class welcomed in ’74. The original classroom clocks were synced (hardwired and controlled from the main office) and no longer operational and hadn’t been for some time. They were kept up until they couldn’t be; after so much time the manufacturer was long gone. Bids for repairing the classroom clock system were astronomical. Instead, DPW replaced them with new clocks, automatically synced and operated via a wireless station in the Commons.
(update: *phase one is 50 replacement clocks- 30 more to be added if these do all they should)
The hodgepodge assortment of abandoned seats and folding tables in the teachers’ break room were replaced with quality and safe amenities.
Two large bathrooms on the ground floor and six small bathrooms on the third floor were renovated. The bathrooms looked rough and dated. Swapping out elements with smart design choices have made a huge difference. New non-porous epoxy flooring in stock colors, fixtures, ceiling tiles, and brushed aluminum wall squares (to clean up and conceal fifty years of mismatched accessory drill holes) work wonders.
Similarly, spot design choices in long halls appeared to complete punch items lingering from the original build. For instance, random walls of cinder blocks– where banks of lockers were planned for and never needed–are now sheet rocked and finished. Others were repaired and painted. The odd, old wood base runners and lifts (again related to locker banks) were removed. Built in custom benches in one hall and a counter for another clean up long corridors and are functional for these spaces in ways they hadn’t been before. Paint color, good quality “brag” boards, and painted quotes were selected by teachers and students. Jason Burroughs hand painted the custom selected phrases.
Wall murals hand lettering by Jason Burroughs
Classrooms – Cleaned up walls and fresh coats of paint (colors selected by teachers)
Teacher’s desk rather than folding table (bonus- match case goods already there)
Acquisition of case-goods in some classrooms was necessary. For instance, this teacher’s desk is no longer a folding table.
Mike Hale describes the recent DPW O’Maley interior projects as small yet necessary and beneficial to staff and students alike. He added,
“Coming in at roughly $100,000/ $10,000**, all in all they’re worthy, and relatively short money on the return.”
Note from author- typo- $100,000 for this work (includes less than $10,000 for clocks).
Exterior efforts at O’Maley include: new trees; garden sprucing; and sign appearing brand new and now sporting Gloucester colors–out with the green/gold in with the red. See prior post related to the completed (long planned) courtyard improvement phase
*Before snapshots courtesy Director of Public Works, Mike Hale.