John Mills rendering

John Mills Construction Project

Keeping the Elmwood Park Community Informed of Our School's Renovations and Additions

On May 17, 2022, the John Mills Elementary School construction project kicked off with a groundbreaking ceremony. The event featured guest speakers, student singers and contest winners, refreshments and even some swag!

For photos of the event, click here. For video coverage and a wrap-up article, click here.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the celebration, and thank you to all Elmwood Park residents who made it possible for us to take our next step in District 401's vision for building a brighter future for our students, families and community.

Building a Brighter Future


Phase 1 Completed: Summer 2022 Rewind

How It Was Going — July 2022

Project Overview

During the next two years, work will be conducted to upgrade John Mills by meeting the following needs:


  • Add classroom and office space to the west side of the building


  • Replace boilers and unit ventilators
  • Repair or replace the HVAC distribution system
  • Repair or replace air conditioning equipment
JM hardhat logo


  • Replace galvanized piping
  • Repair pipes, drains, related equipment where needed
  • Replace water heaters


  • Upgrade circuit breakers and electrical panels and related wiring and equipment
  • Replace or provide wiring throughout the building
  • Replace interior and exterior lighting


  • Replace windows, repair roofs and conduct tuckpointing around the entire exterior
  • Replace doors, including door frames and locks
  • Replace security camera, door alarm and public address systems
  • Renovate interior spaces to modernize the learning environment

Construction work will get fully underway on May 31, 2022, with completion scheduled for August 2024. The entire John Mills property will be inaccessible during the summer.

Handling the project will be DLA Architects, Ltd., and International Contractors, Inc., the same firms responsible for the recent renovation and expansion of Elm Middle School.

John Mills Groundbreaking Ceremony

Groundbreaking ceremony at John Mills

PHOTOS: Above, members of the District 401 Board of Education, along with our Superintendent of Schools, District administrators and John Mills building leaders, participate in the ceremonial groundbreaking at the school on May 17, 2022. Below, John Mills students perform their school song under the direction of music teacher Sarah Altshuler. Click the student photo to see and hear them perform! For more photos, visit these galleries. (Top photo by Alex Romanovsky, DLA Architects; bottom photo by Dave Porreca, District 401)

John Mills students perform their school song.

Construction Timeline

Renderings of the New John Mills

What a New John Mills Will Look Like

Project Floor Plans

John Mills Floor Plans

ABOVE: Floor plan for lower level of John Mills (click image for larger view).

JM Floor Plans

ABOVE: Floor plan for first floor of John Mills (click image for larger view).

JM Floor Plans

ABOVE: Floor plan for second floor of John Mills (click image for larger view).