Gary Comer College Preparatory High School is a public charter school located on the City’s South Side in the Greater Grand Crossing community area. CDF provided a total of $21.5 million in NMTC financing to the school via two staged closings in 2009. This allocation was used to finance the construction of a new school facility, with a total enrollment of approximately 750 students. The high school is roughly 45,000 square feet, and includes 25 classrooms, four science laboratories and a computer laboratory. The new building achieved LEED Silver certification.
The project functions synergistically with the adjacent Gary Comer Youth Center, which is owned and operated by the Comer Science and Education Foundation. Students of GCCPHS have access to the youth center’s gymnasium, theater, computer labs, cafeteria and locker rooms. Students also have access to the youth center’s 8,100 square foot green roof, which serves as an outdoor classroom for community members of all ages and produces over 1,000 pounds of produce each year for use in meals prepared at the youth center. Excess produce from the rooftop garden and associated growing areas located adjacent to the youth center is distributed to local restaurants and a local farmers market.
The school opened in September 2010 for the 2010-2011 academic year.