Jolley School will have new heating/AC system

Jolley School will have new heating/AC system by M. Jill Karolevitz Jolley School staff and students will experience a more comfortable learning environment as the Vermillion School Board approved the installation of a new heating and air conditioning system during its Feb. 12 meeting.

�This will be a total upgrade,� said Superintendent Robert Mayer. �The building is 50 years old. It has to be done.�

Johnson Controls is in charge of the project and will hire contractors to complete the work. The school district hired Dave Rowenstein of Sioux Falls, an independent engineer, to design the system.

Included in the project is a change from steam to hot water heat. The tunnel units will be abandoned and overhead heating ducts will be used instead of the unit ventilators in each room. The air conditioning system will be of roof-top design. A new boiler has already been installed. That work was completed last October.

The cost of the Jolley School project will be about $435,000, according to Mayer.

�The district will apply for a $25,000 energy grant to help with the cost,� he said. �And we have $300,000 in our capital outlay fund that is set aside for the project. The rest will be financed, but we think the energy savings over a 10-year period will pay for that. The energy savings in heating alone will be 15 to 25 percent.

�There are several advantages in doing this project,� Mayer continued. �It will definitely improve the air quality in the building. We had a mold problem in Austin School that was taken care of, but there will be no such problem at Jolley after the tunnels are abandoned. There will be no place for moisture to build up.�

On a scale of one to 10 for energy efficiency, �this ranks a nine, according to Johnson Controls,� he added. �There are also fewer components to maintain and classroom noise will be reduced without the unit ventilators.�

Mayer is pleased with the school board�s decision to go ahead with the heating/air conditioning project.

�I applaud the school board for approving this project,� he said. �It will improve the quality of learning, especially during the hottest months, and the system has a life expectancy of about 30 years. In that time, it will have served 12,000 students.�

In other business, a bid of $239,000 from Tellinghuisen Construction of Willow Lake was approved for the construction of two new classrooms at Austin School. The plan for the addition has been in the works since the approval of all-day kindergarten last year.

�We have money in our capital outlay fund for the project,� Mayer said.

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