Buildings Who's Who - Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Florida

Aug. 7, 2001
32 million square feet of educational facilities located at 357 board-owned sites

In April, Child magazine gave Miami-Dade County Public School (M-DCPS) officials a golden moment - public declaration of the district's effectiveness.

Editors at the consumer magazine named Miami the fourth best city to raise a family and cited the public school district as a main reason for the city's family-friendly atmosphere. Noted were the district's magnet-school program, with 78 fields of study, including the newly added mechanical engineering, commercial art, and biomedicine; greatly increased standardized test scores; and, most notably, the district's expanded after-school programs for kids, which Child editors attribute to the city's 40-percent reduction in crime since 1993.

At the heart of the M-DCPS system is 32 million square feet of educational facilities located at 357 board-owned sites. The district operates a vast Facilities Planning and Operations department that oversees construction, renovation, and ongoing maintenance of these buildings. The task is monumental: In a typical year, the Maintenance and Operations office's team of 1,400 employees plans, schedules, and completes more than 85,000 work orders.

The district has spent $4 billion for capital purposes since 1988. In 1988, a $980 million bond issue paved the way for the district's largest facilities improvement initiative to-date. The work still continues.

Since 1988, funds from this massive referendum and other levies have planned, designed, and built 67 new schools; 20 primary learning centers; 10 major building conversions; 15 major additions at existing schools; and lesser additions and renovations at 187 school sites. Sixty-two more facilities are under construction or in the planning stage.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Buildings, create an account today!

Sponsored Recommendations