As many of our community members are aware, the Mill Valley Middle School is set to undergo a major transformation. The proposed Mill Valley Middle School Modernization Project will see the replacement of the existing buildings with a modern, new structure. The current 100,000 square feet of buildings will be replaced by a new 83,000-square-foot building, while the existing gymnasium will be remodeled. During construction, students and staff will use an interim campus with 35 modular classrooms in the school’s parking lots and open areas.

The City of Mill Valley and the Mill Valley School District have a collaborative history spanning over 70 years, working together for the betterment of Mill Valley. The School District’s decision to rebuild on the existing site has garnered widespread support from both the City and the community. As partners, the City is committed to supporting the District to ensure the project’s success.

Currently, the City’s immediate priority is to finalize a Joint Use Agreement for Friends Field, which will formally allocate management and maintenance responsibilities for the field.

Recently, the School District has issued a Notice of Preparation (NOP) for the upcoming Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the reconstruction project, inviting broad participation from community members to thoroughly assess all potential environmental impacts and feasible alternatives. A scoping meeting will be held on July 18, 2024, at 3:00 PM in the District Office Conference Room, with written comments accepted until July 19, 2024. The District encourages community involvement to ensure all voices are heard and concerns addressed.

The Mill Valley Middle School Modernization Project represents a significant investment in the future of the community’s education infrastructure. With the support of the City and active participation from the public, the project aims to create a modern, efficient, and inspiring environment for students and staff alike.

The significant step forward comes on the heels of a complex series of months in which the City of Mill Valley and the Mill Valley School District squared off in a feverish debate over the district’s stated intentions, with the district learning that it owned Friends Field, which city officials have called “Mill Valley’s living room.”

The history and significance of Friends Field are intertwined with the adjacent Community Center, which was constructed with a combination of public and private funds. It was built at a cost of $12.8 million in 1997 (equivalent to $25 million today), with $6 million ($11.7 million today) from community donations. Community members involved in the fundraising effort shared stories of hundreds of children who brought their piggy banks to contribute to this cherished community asset. 

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