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Universal Pre-K at St. Paul the Apostle

Universal Pre-K at St. Paul the Apostle


Faced with a mayoral mandate to add more Pre-K schools in the city, the NYC Department of Education (DOE) leased space for a school from the Roman Catholic Church of St. Paul the Apostle in Queens. Even though the church was already equipped with lockers and gymnasia, major renovations were required to have the space—named Universal Pre-K—ready for students. There were offices to build, water fountains to install, and classrooms to paint, among other things. The NYC DOE had limited time and limited budget, and it needed a contractor that would preserve the integrity of the storied parish.


To save time and money on the project, the NYC Department of Education accessed Gordian’s Job Order Contracting (JOC) solution. JOC enables contractors to complete a substantial number of individual projects with a single bid. Tasks are based on competitively-awarded, preset prices. Pro Con Group Inc. was selected for the project, which demanded an extraordinary amount of care to avoid disturbing church activities or interfering with the schedules of priests who lived in the building. Additionally, religious items also had to be properly removed from the space.

Universal Pre-K at St. Paul the Apostle
Universal Pre-K at St. Paul the Apostle
Universal Pre-K at St. Paul the Apostle


This was a major renovation project that included installing a wrought iron fence and gate outside the play yard and building new nurse’s and principal’s offices. Ultimately, the project was finished on budget and on time. Children that previously did not have access to Pre-K education now enjoy the center daily and the church operates around it, serving its parish as it always had.

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