Council Approves 2 Community Members for Construction Panel

by | May 14, 2024

That rounds out the committee that will be overseeing the $150M school build

The Town Council finalized the makeup of the new School Construction Committee Monday night, voting in two community members – David LaPlante and Jacob Pray. The panel will oversee the building of one new school at Frenchtown, a near total rebuild at Hanaford and extensive renovations at Meadowbrook and EGHS, using the $150 million voters approved last November to pay for it. 

Council President Mark Schwager and Councilors Renu Englehart and Caryn Corenthal all voted in favor of the two men. Councilor Michael Zarrella recused himself because a family member had been among the five applicants. Mike Donegan was absent.

Pray is a senior project manager at Dellbrook/JKS Construction of Quincy, Mass., with a degree in civil engineering. On his resume (HERE), Pray said he has been “responsible for overall leadership and direction on several construction projects from preconstruction through closeout.” 

In his cover letter, Pray wrote, “My projects have ranged from an elementary school in Lexington, Mass., to the Aquatics Center at Brown University and everything in between. I would be happy to offer my knowledge and experience to ensure our school projects are educationally and fiscally successful.”

LaPlante is the director of design and construction at Harvard Medical School and before that spent 20 years at Brown University managing major capital projects. He has a degree in architecture.

In his cover letter (and resume HERE), LaPlante noted he could “help guide the SCC [School Construction Committee] through successful review of budget submissions including the final GMP [guaranteed maximum price]. Construction managers will try to shift risk to an owner. I will help reduce and mitigate that risk…. I am able to speak the language throughout the entire design and construction process. As a member of this town, I will genuinely have our best interest in mind when making recommendations and suggestions for your consideration.”

The new panel’s first job will be to interview potential “owner’s project manager” candidates and then present their recommendation to the Town Council, which will make the final decision. 

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Chris Lamendola
Chris Lamendola
May 15, 2024 11:48 am

Congratulations to Mr. Jacob Pray and Mr. David LaPlante and thank you for your time and effort on behalf of the EG community. One would anticipate that Mr. Pray and Mr. LaPlante would educate themselves on the debacle involving the damage and destruction of the homes surrounding the previous Cole construction project, the OPM intimately involved with the damage of these homes as well as the shenanigans of the contractors involved and be steadfast as community advocates in protecting the neighborhoods and abutters of this new $150M bond project. 

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