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Improvement project under way at Northwood School

June 20, 2012

LAKE PLACID - Bulldozers and excavators have been busy recently clearing the way for a new access road at Northwood School.

The work is part of a $3 million capital improvement project that includes the construction of two 5,000-square-foot classroom buildings and a more pedestrian-friendly campus.

"We started a campus master plan in 2007," Northwood Headmaster Edward Good told the Enterprise on Tuesday. "We're reconfiguring roads. We've already done some renovations. It's a plan for the future."

So far, the private high school has raised $1.75 million from alumni, trustees and friends, and it's only five months into its two-year capital campaign, according to Stephanie Colby, associate director of development.

The school has already completed renovations to the Bergamini Girls' Dormitory and to the living room of the Allyn Building.

The work that's under way now will occur in two phases. Part one is the construction of a new campus access road off of Mirror Lake Drive. Colby said the road will redirect heavy delivery traffic - food and UPS, for example - to behind the Allyn Building.

The current access road off of Northwood Road will be closed so the school can build a pedestrian-friendly space for students.

"It will give kids a place to throw Frisbees and run with dogs without fear of competing with a 40-foot trailer," Good said.

Good said the new access road will also make the school more visible to visitors driving and walking around Mirror Lake.

The second part of the master plan features construction of two new buildings that will house seven classrooms each. Those will be located behind the Allyn Building.

Colby said the access road project should be complete by the fall. Then the school will begin working on the new classroom buildings. She said the school intends for these to be in use by fall 2013.

Each classroom will be approximately 480 square feet in size. Colby said some will feature oval Harkness tables at which teachers and students sit together, a method used in many American boarding schools and colleges. The new classrooms will also be equipped with wireless Internet, Smart Boards and other multimedia equipment.

Northwood School focuses on three areas of teenage development: academic and intellectual advancement, athletics and extracurricular activities, and holistic education. Good said enrollment has been at an "optimal level" for the last eight or so years. This year and last, the school had about 180 students.

The school has students from 22 states and 12 countries. About 145 of those students are boarders from outside the area, while about 35 are day students from the Tri-Lakes area.

Contact Chris Morris at

891-2600 ext. 25 or




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