Brownell Modernization Project

The Brownell Middle School Modernization Project began in the summer of 2019.  This project will transform the campus and enhance the surrounding Carmel and Hanna Streets neighborhood and the Gilroy community.  Once complete, the new middle school campus will be another state-of-the-art facility in the Gilroy Unified School District and will be highly visible to community members who travel on First Street.  

Conceptualizing for the project began in early 2018 with a design team that consisted of staff members and administrators from GUSD and Brownell.  The design team was led by Aedis Architects and the project continues to garner national attention for its attention to design, safety and security aspects.  The school design boasts classroom pods for each grade level, featuring collaborative classrooms and an integrated outdoor learning environment.  Students will have the opportunity to learn using new technology infrastructure, maker spaces and science labs.

The north field at Brownell, where the track is currently located, has been designated as the construction zone for Flint Builders, the contractor on the project. The field, closed to staff, students and the public, since May 2019, will remain closed as the project progresses.  Currently, the Gilroy Unified School District is removing soil from the north field because trace levels of arsenic were discovered. These traces are presumably leftover from when the property was used as an orchard.  The soil removal is scheduled to be completed mid-July 2019, prior to the commencement of construction.

Approved Design



** Timeline is tentative and subject to change. **

Phase Schedule and Project Timeline



** Timeline is tentative and subject to change. **

Project Phases (Dates are tentative & subject to change)

Phase I

August 2019 through August 2020 (North Field side of campus)

  • Site preparations - removal of existing elements (sheds, storage containers, soccer goals)
  • Grading of the site - soil preparations and leveling of the site
  • Underground utility trenching and connections to city infrastructure
  • Foundations poured for buildings
  • Exterior parking lots formed
  • Classroom pods brought in and placed (February-March 2020)
  • Finish work on buildings: interiors, connecting to utilities, mechanical, electrical, plumbing
  • Finish internal work: wallboards, lights, carpet, furniture, IT infrastructure, etc. in four classroom pods (32 classrooms) and the admin building.
  • GUSD will take occupancy in the summer of 2020 and the project will move to Phase II. 

Phase II (begins concurrently with Phase III)

June 2020 through February 2021

  • Project area includes where existing structures currently stand in the mid-campus
  • Demolition of existing school structures (except current kitchen)
  • Grading of campus and prep for new buildings
  • Utility trenching
  • Foundations poured
  • Buildings placed in January of 2021 
  • Finish work on the two 6th grade pods, new media library and new kitchen: interiors, connecting to utilities, mechanical, electrical, plumbing
  • Internal finish work on the two 6th grade pods, new media library and new kitchen: wallboards, lights, carpet, furniture, IT infrastructure, etc.

Phase III (begins concurrently with Phase II)

June 2020 through May 2021 (3rd Street side of campus)

  • Phase III begins concurrently with Phase II 
  • Renovation of the playing field and relocation of the track
  • Demolition of 6th-grade village and old kitchen
  • Installation of new basketball courts and sports field 

For questions regarding the Brownell Modernization Project or other facilities improvements within Gilroy Unified School District, please contact: Paul Nadeau, Director of Facilities, 669-205-7921 or

Project Highlights

Cost: $70.8 million, thanks to the Gilroy voters who passed Measures E and P

New Construction: Six classroom pods (6th, 7th and 8th grades) with integrated outdoor learning spaces; administration building; kitchen and media center; recreation space

Modernization Project: Improvements to existing gymnasium and multi-purpose room

Additional Project Highlights:  Available visitor parking and student drop-off area; added staff parking; student quad; relocate track and athletic fields and renovate existing outdoor recreation areas