Last updated on May 27th, 2021 at 02:26 pm
The Milwaukee Academy of Science is kicking off construction this week for its planned 20,000-square-foot expansion.
The school, located at 2000 W. Kilbourn Ave. in what once housed the Milwaukee Hospital and Sinai Samaritan Medical Center, plans to build out the expansion in vacant space on its campus and construct a new athletic facility.
MAS officials will celebrate the start of the $3.3 million project with a groundbreaking event Thursday.
After five consecutive years of record enrollment, school leaders say they need more space to accommodate 250 additional middle and high school students by 2024.
The school currently occupies the first two floors of the former hospital building, serving 1,250 students. It plans to develop the building’s third floor to include five new high school classrooms, four new middle school classrooms, two STEAM labs and eight staff offices.
“It’s our commitment and promise to provide the best STEM education possible to the youth in our community,” said Anthony McHenry, chief executive officer of MAS. “This expansion is both an exciting milestone and a necessary stepping stone to better serving our students and setting them up for success.”
The planned 6,700-square-foot gym facility will be developed adjacent to the existing gym building, and would have its own entryway and include locker rooms and bathrooms. Currently, the school has one gym to serve all students and MAS athletic teams use classrooms and storage closets for locker rooms. The new $1.7 million gym will bear the name of its largest funder, the Todd Wehr Foundation.
Funding for the project has also come from the Herb Kohl Foundation, Burke Foundation, Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation and Milwaukee Tool.
The school opened in 2000, serving grades K-8. MAS was founded by Michael T. Bolger, former president of the Medical College of Wisconsin, who was concerned at the time that fewer than 1% of the Medical College’s students were minorities from Milwaukee. The school is focused on preparing students for careers in the STEM and health fields.
It has since expanded to serve grades K4-12.