École Mixte de Nancy is a private preschool and primary school serving approximately 300 children ages 3-5 and grades 1st through 6th with 17 staff (20 before the earthquake) in the Delmas 33 neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. The school has been in operation since 1998. It is incorporated and registered with MENFP and is not a charity; the land is owned by the school as well as an adjacent site where the temporary school is located. The school is being assisted by World Vision to provide lunches.
The existing 3-story school building was damaged and subsequently repaired to prevent collapse; the building is currently used for storage only. The site adjacent is approximately 480 m2 (5,200 sf) and has been purchased for the new school (ownership has not been confirmed). No additional funding partners for construction have been identified. Tuition fees are 750 gourdes per month.
Access and Surrounding Area
The school is located in a dense urban area near the major intersection of Delmas 33 and Avenue Mais Gate and is 56m (184 feet) above sea level. The school site is accessible by vehicle a short distance from Avenue Mais Gate. The surrounding building fabric is dense and low rise consisting mostly of residences and schools.
Site Specific information
The existing property is approximately 15m x 17m or 255 m2 (50’ x 56’ or 2,750sf). The new site adjacent is 30m x 16m or 480 m2 (98’ x 52’ or 5,200sf). The temporary school is located at the northern end of the new site and is about 7m x 15m (23’ x 49’) in size. Light foliage and some rubble also cover the new site. It slopes gently to the south dropping about 1 m (3ft) over its length. The existing cistern is located on the front side of the school or northeast side of the site. Though the school had power from the grid before the earthquake, they do not currently have access to electricity.
The existing building provided approximately 490 m2 (5,300 sf) on three floors accommodating the following spaces:
• 9 Classrooms
• 3 Offices
• Toilet - the campus also has an outdoor latrine adjacent to the building
Structural assessment of existing building
The existing 3 story building has suffered extensive damage to the ground floor level during the January 2010 Earthquake. Repair work has been carried out in the form of filling in cracks and constructing several new columns to support the upper floors. There is evidence of failure in the ground slab which would suggest lateral movement of the entire building. The extent of cracks in almost every wall would be consistent with this suggestion. Reports that cracks were several centimeters wide also support the theory of widespread failure. Window bays have been replaced due to vertical compression which caused failure (bent window bars are still in place). Upper floors are intact. Inter-story slabs are relatively small due to the size of rooms. This factor, and the resulting lateral stiffness of the building, is likely to have prevented more serious collapse of the structure during the January 2010 Earthquake. While the structure may be safe for gravity and wind loads (although this cannot be determined without testing of materials used, and previous experience suggests both substandard materials and workmanship), it is unlikely in the extreme that the school would survive another earthquake. Therefore it must be regarded as unsafe.
The school serves the following student population:
• Kindergarten 96 students
• 1st – 6th grade 204 students
It is their intention to add a middle school section through 9th grade and begin enrolling up to (50) 7th graders for the coming school year, the total projection for 3 years is 450 students.
The school will continue in temporary quarters and the existing building will only be used for storage. They have been asked to provide proof of ownership and to investigate other partners/funders to help cover construction costs.
The staff has requested the following program to accommodate:
• 4 – Kindergarten/preschool classrooms
• 5 – 1st through 5th grade classrooms
• 3 – 6th through 8th grade classrooms
• 1 – 9th grade classrooms
• Science Lab
• Computer lab
• Game room
• Conference room
• 2 offices
1. Continue operations under temporary shelter (Two temporary structures have since been built on the new site)
2. Pending proof of land ownership, proceed with a Pre-Planning/Design package to better enable fundraising for construction (Proof of land ownership provided)
3. School should aggressively pursue funding partners for construction
4. Demolish existing building as part of a phased construction plan utilizing both sites. (School have provided a quote for demolition and clearance costs. Demolition timing is being considered in sketch schemes)