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Rock Creek wins energy-efficiency award

By The Mercury

Leaders at Rock Creek USD 323 expect recently completed energy efficiency upgrades to save the district nearly $154,000 a year while enhancing the teaching and learning environment.

The improvements, which were completed in August 2011, are designed to reduce energy use while addressing deferred maintenance issues.

In honor of the district’s commitment to energy and operational efficiency and sustainability, Trane is presenting the district with the “Energy Efficiency Leader Award at 7 p.m. in Rock Creek Junior/Senior high school cafeteria.

“These upgrades make sound economic and environmental sense,” said Darrell Stufflebeam, USD 323 superintendent. “Even more importantly, they allow us to better educate our students, while providing a positive example of environmental stewardship for the entire community.”

Improvements included lighting upgrades in classrooms and hallways in all district buildings. High efficiency heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems were implemented to improve indoor air quality, increase ventilation and provide more comfortable classroom temperatures.

Automated controls were installed to maximize efficiency of both the lighting and the HVAC. Plumbing was updated with low-flow fixtures.

Improvements in the Junior/Senior High School building included replacing an end-of-life air-cooled chiller and replacing the original pneumatic controls with a direct digital control system.

The new direct digital controls monitor manages all HVAC systems in the building. It allows for uniform temperature control and provides the ability to schedule occupied and unoccupied room temperature set points for energy savings.

At Westmoreland Elementary, the old steam boiler, steam radiators and window air conditioning units were replaced with a high-efficiency variable refrigerant flow system.

Each classroom received an indoor heating/cooling unit which provides a quiet, comfortable learning environment.

The split system HVAC units in the 1993 classroom additions were replaced with new high efficiency units.

A gym ventilation system was added to allow for cooling and ventilating on a mild day.

A direct digital control system was installed to control, monitor, and schedule all new and existing HVAC equipment.

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