Gilbane Building Company Completes Construction of Dearborn STEM Academy in Boston


BOSTON–  Gilbane Building Company, in association with JANEY Construction Management, has completed the 120,000 SF construction of Dearborn STEM Academy in Roxbury, Mass.

Serving grades 6-12, Dearborn is the cornerstone of Boston Mayor Walsh’s plan to modernize the Boston Public School System.

The school is steeped in innovation and embodies Gilbane’s dedication to advancing 21stcentury learning: the design and construction are integrated into the science, engineering and technology curriculum, and the building features transparent and flexible spaces for collaboration and project-based learning among students and teachers. Highlights include open spaces designed for project-based learning, including a Fab Lab, makerspace and learning commons focused on STEM-related career clusters.

This project strongly reflects Gilbane’s longstanding commitment workplace diversity. As Mayor Martin J. Walsh noted at the school’s ribbon-cutting, 40 percent of the construction work (over 99,000 hours) was conducted by people of color, exceeding the City of Boston’s minority work hour requirement by 15 percentage points. Thirty-nine percent of the work (almost 94,000 hours) was conducted by Boston residents; and 7 percent of the work was conducted by females (16,500 hours). In addition, Gilbane employed the first Boston resident/female of color labor steward in the history of the City.

Dearborn is the first school construction project of its kind where the building itself is integrated into the academic curriculum and will be used to stimulate the learning environment, helping to make difficult concepts easier to grasp. The architectural design features duct work, piping, and HVAC systems all in plain view, so students can see the inner-workings of building in action.

“With Dearborn STEM Academy, Gilbane, our partners, and the City of Boston had the opportunity to build a school that will serve as a model for education for decades to come,” said Ryan Hutchins, senior vice president of Gilbane Building Company and New England Division leader. “We’re excited to see the learning outcomes that result from the student study of the building and are gratified to know that this building will play a role in preparing today’s students for 21stcentury careers.”

The scope of work included the abatement and demolition of an existing school built in 1918, which Gilbane took great care to achieve with minimal impact to the vibrant city neighborhood that includes another school, four churches, and many homes. The company also preserved and salvaged many items from the original building, including a time capsule from 1912 which was delivered to the City Archives. Some prominent building components and statues were painstakingly refurbished and placed back on school grounds as a way for students to better appreciate the school’s historical significance.

“As the product of a STEM education, I know how important it is to have a state-of-the-art STEM school right here in our community of Roxbury,” said Greg Janey, CEO of JANEY Construction. “The fact that the school itself will be a part of the curriculum will help get students energized about STEM careers, creating a pipeline of strong contributors to Boston’s workforce in the years to come.”

The $73 million project was completed in partnership with the City of Boston, Jonathan Levi Architects, Daedalus Projects and JANEY Construction Management.