Upper Arlington News

Upper Arlington schools

Energy efficiency project to be finished by spring


An efficiency project expected to save Upper Arlington schools $305,800 a year in energy expenses should be complete by this spring, according to Chris Potts, the district's executive director of business.

Potts updated the school board about the project at a December meeting.

The Ohio Schools Facilities Commission approved the $1.9-million project under House Bill 264 guidelines, which permit school districts to make energy efficiency improvements that may be paid for with energy savings in 15 years or less.

Potts said the district is working with Sabo/Limbach Energy Services, which also audits its utility bills, rate negotiations and mechanical services.

"We began working on the improvements in September and expect to complete the project in the spring," Potts said.

The energy improvements included installing new hot water boilers at Jones Middle School and Burbank Early Childhood School.

Potts said a 42-year-old hot water tank at Burbank was replaced with a new and more efficient tank.

"We also installed 600 feet of new hot water piping for the new boilers at Jones," he said. "Right now, the school is still being heated with a steam boiler, but we will have the new hot water boilers installed by spring."

He said existing metal halide light fixtures in the Windermere gym were replaced with T-8 fluorescent lighting, which should result in a rebate from American Electric Power (AEP).

Potts said other work to be completed as part of the project includes installing a new chilled water piping system, a new chiller, unit ventilators and a changeover to new boiler and chiller systems at Burbank and a new boiler system at Jones.

The project will replace any remaining pneumatic control systems with electronic controls, to result in a web-based system that will be easier for staff members to manage remotely, Potts said.

He also introduced a list of proposed capital improvement projects for the upcoming summer.

"Each year brings new projects," he said. "We are assessing roofs this year and will be collecting quotes for those projects. With the average age of our buildings at 57 years old, we can't afford to ignore these improvements."

The summer projects include chiller replacements at Hastings and Jones middle schools; parking lot renovations at Burbank and Tremont Elementary and Upper Arlington High School; playground asphalt sealing at Tremont and Windermere; a field turf replacement at the high school; roof replacements at Barrington, Greensview and the high school; security upgrades at Barrington and Wickliffe elementary schools and the purchase of maintenance and custodial equipment.