Written by Garden City Public Schools Office of Public Information Friday, 19 October 2012 00:00
Inside and out, Garden City School District has a fresh new look. District students can create, research, study, and build the foundations for a lifelong love of learning in the many new and upgraded classrooms and work spaces now in use. The sweeping changes were made possible by the School Investment Bond approved by voters on October 27, 2009 and the district’s Energy Performance Contract (EPC).
Thanks to the community’s support of its public schools, the district was able to contract with BBS Architects for design and T. G. Nikel for construction management of three new additions: a beautiful art/music and library space at Homestead; a new gymnasium, locker rooms, and fitness center at the middle school; and three new music spaces at the high school. Other improvements accomplished through the bond work include the addition of two new parking areas and bus loops at the middle and high schools for student safety, a newly paved parking area at the bus garage, replacement of the modular transportation office, replacement of the high school bleachers and press box, and new roofs at the high school, Locust, and the administration building, just to name a few.
The EPC enabled energy upgrades to every one of the district’s nine buildings at no net cost to taxpayers. The upgrades include new windows and doors, ceiling and lighting upgrades (many with photovoltaic sensors to dim classroom lights adjacent to windows when sunlight is bright), replacement of boilers in multiple buildings with smaller, dual-use models (oil/gas) programmable from a web-based system that maximizes energy conservation.
Con Edison Solutions, the company awarded the EPC, replaced the boilers at all three primary schools, the middle and high schools, and the bus garage and the administration building. “The existing boilers were old and well beyond the estimated useful life of the equipment and burned only #2 fuel oil,” explained Tak Eng, senior manager of development. “In the case of the primary schools and the administration building, we installed two boilers whereas there was only one (without any redundancy or backup boilers.) We worked with National Grid to bring in natural gas for the boilers in all these buildings with the exception of Locust [gas lines to Locust were cost-prohibitive] to enable the new higher efficiency boilers to be dual-fuel boilers capable of burning natural gas as the primary fuel and #2 fuel oil as the backup fuel. The boiler replacement energy measure was just one of the many energy measures included in the EPC.”
The chart below was compiled by Con Edison Solutions to illustrate the guaranteed savings achieved through the boiler upgrades – just one component of the EPC.
Energy upgrades like those shown in the chart will not only save tax dollars for years to come, but align the district with an environmentally conscious approach to energy use. In fact, the district’s total annual energy savings has been calculated by Con Edison Solutions to include savings of 2,610 tons of carbon dioxide from going into the atmosphere, or 5,006 barrels of oil, 54,567 trees, the equivalent of 308 households worth of electricity or emissions from 453 cars. These savings represent a commitment to future generations of which Garden City residents can be proud.
With gratitude, the board of education and district administration thank the community for its generous support of the 2009 School Investment Bond, an investment that provides our students’ with upgraded facilities and a model of energy conservation for years to come.