Fewer School Seats, But More on the West Side

The Department of Education’s latest five-year capital plan proposes building 1,600 fewer seats than projected in 2004, according to a new report from the city’s Independent Budget Office.

According to the plan the DOE adopted in June of 2004, the goal was to build 39,204 seats for elementary and intermediary schools (pre-K to 8th grade) citywide. According to plans the department is proposing now, the goal is to build 37,181. That’s a reduction of 2,023 seats.

In schools for grades six to twelve, the department boosted the number of seats they want to create, from 26,402 to 26,754.

The area that saw the biggest projected increase in school seating was Manhattan’s 2nd school district. That’s where the department wants to create 1,890 additional seats, thanks mostly to rezoning on the West side, where the Mayor originally wanted a stadium but got housing instead.

– Azi Paybarah