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Prep's Master Plan: A Green Light for a Grand Vision

An aerial rendering of Prep's campus master plan by Beyer Blinder Belle, architects.

 Dreams Become Reality

In the summers of 2010 and 2011, Saint Peter's Prep began and then completed all Phase One construction. The first project involved the conversion of the former Saint Peter’s Church building into a temporary multi-purpose space, which now serves as the student cafeteria and home to various alumni and parent events.  Prep then concluded its work on the Moriarty Science Center this past fall, and celebrated its dedication in October.  The budget for the phase one projects was approximately $14.5 million and were funded through the special initiative entitled Imagine: The Fund for Saint Peter’s Prep. Growth of the school’s scholarship resources, and a few smaller initiatives, were also funded through the Imagine Fund, which now totals approximately $17.5 million.

The master planning process—more than two years in the making—notched a significant milestone on June 22, 2009, when the board of trustees unanimously approved the phase one project. The endorsement of the trustees set in motion an extensive and far-reaching campus-renewal program—projected to extend a decade or more—that will include both new construction and the extensive renovation of virtually all existing buildings.

“The board’s endorsement of the master plan’s initial phase is not only an exciting moment in the history of Saint Peter’s Prep, but also is an endorsement of the plan’s thoroughness,” stated Jack Caulfield, ’71, board chairman. “Significantly, the proposed phasing of the various projects over many years allows the school to execute projects and phases only when adequate funding is available for each step. This fact ensures that the board is discharging its fiduciary responsibilities, especially regarding such a broad-based master plan, appropriately.”

The church building—which Prep has owned since 2004—became available for full-time use by the school this past spring when the Parish of the Resurrection announced the consolidation of its member churches.
For Prep President Bob Reiser, S.J., the early support of the Imagine Fund has provided crucial momentum as the master plan has taken shape over the past two and one-half years.

“Especially given the economic climate over the past year or so, I am very gratified that our outreach thus far has yielded enthusiastic support for the master plan, in terms of encouragement and advice, as well as in financial support,” said Fr. Reiser. “It is always a challenge to raise capital funds while also running a successful Annual Fund, but our constituents seem to understand our need to do both. In many ways, the experience of the Keys to the Future campaign in the 1990s and the Carpe Diem campaign earlier this decade have provided a solid foundation for this latest major-gifts effort.”


View the floor-by-floor buildout of Prep's master plan. Click each thumbnail for a larger view.

Cellar Level Ground Level 2nd Floor
3rd Floor 4th Floor 5th Floor

The approval of phase one by the board of trustees includes conservative financial parameters requiring that construction will proceed on any projects only if Prep’s cash-in-hand reaches at least fifty percent of the expected construction costs, with financing for the balance also in place. 

The other phases of the master plan include the construction of a large multi-purpose space in the York Street parking lot; extensive renovations of Mulry Hall and Hogan Hall; a major reconfiguration of the former Jesuit residence; possible accommodation for parking on campus; construction of a new academic building (along York Street); and the conversion of the upper floors of the Humanities Building (former Freshman Building) into office space for non-academic administration and external affairs. 

Jim Horan, ’70, vice president for planning & principal giving, serves as Prep’s internal coordinator of the master planning projects, while also working closely with Fr. Reiser on the major-gifts fundraising that supports the Imagine Fund. 

“It is very easy to be enthusiastic about this master plan,” Horan noted, reflecting on his four-plus decades at Prep, beginning as a student and followed by various faculty and administrative roles. “For many decades now, Prep has been a great school despite its aging physical plant. Fortunately, the projects completed as part of our last two capital campaigns—especially the new library, the Warren Street plaza, and Keenan Field—have started to close that gap, while also demonstrating the school’s ability to raise significant capital funds. This new wave of projects, developed with the input of our professional advisors, our faculty and administration, and other constituent groups, will have a truly transformative effect on the school, enhancing every aspect of campus life, both in and out of the classroom.

“Most gratifying is the fact that Prep’s ‘vital signs,’ especially enrollment and fundraising, have remained strong, despite economic uncertainties. Our Jesuit tradition and academic excellence continue to serve us well, which has encouraged alumni and others to provide a number of early leadership gifts in support of the Imagine Fund. Overall, the master plan is ambitious, but as we hear so often from alumni and others, Prep is worth the effort.”