As WeLoveDC’s Georgetown/Glover Park resident reporter, I considered myself fairly well informed on the general neighborhood on-goings. However, I was completely stumped about a month ago when on my daily commute a passed the Stoddert Recreation Center fields to see them completely fenced off. I was even more confused when the only construction sign announced a “Geothermal Renewable Energy Project.” What the heck did that mean? And how would this project affect the adjacent elementary school and the playing fields that were now fenced in?
It turns out that both Stoddert Elementary School, built in 1932, and Stoddert Recreation Center are getting a much needed overhaul. The existing 18,000 square foot school, which provides pre-K to 5th grade education to approximately 300 DC children, will grow by about 46,000 square feet. The addition will include classrooms, a publicly accessible gym and multiple purpose rooms to service the neighborhood community. Grounds work will affect both the school and the accompanying recreation center with a new entry plaza, new trees, a 40-car parking lot; reconstruction of the existing softball and soccer fields (from a personal point-of-view, this is HUGE as the existing fields were a twisted ankle/busted knee waiting to happen), a refurbished playground and a new tot lot.
The project’s design hinges on retaining Glover Park’s green spaces, utilizing green building design and energy saving technologies. All of these will help the $1.89 million dollar project, designed by EE&K/AE, achieve LEED for Schools Silver Certification. Additionally, Stoddert Elementary School will participate in The Alliance to Save Energy’s 2008-2009 “Green Schools Program”, whose goal is to help students teach their parents and surrounding community members about energy efficiency in the home by using their school as a demonstration laboratory.
For the 2009 school year, students will be housed in modular school building known as “Stoddert East” and located on the 39 Street and Calvert Street NW. Construction on the new school and recreation center is to be completed by July 31, 2010 for the upcoming 2010 school year.