District Working to Implement A/C in Elementary Buildings

September 5, 2014 (Independence, Iowa) – As summer winds down and the new school year begins, the work of the Independence Community School District (ICSD) Building and Grounds crew continues at full speed. The ICSD Building and Grounds department spent the summer working on various facility projects, including:

Early Childhood Center
• Five classrooms were repainted
• All floors were waxed
• Additional concrete added to the playground

East Elementary
• New carpet, counters and cabinets were installed
• Front window panels were replaced
• Summer maintenance work was completed
• Touch up painting throughout building\

West Elementary
• Commons floor and hallway floors were renovated and sealed
• New ceilings, light fixtures, walls, sinks, urinals and stools were installed in the restrooms
• Gym floor was sealed
• All floors cleaned and/or waxed
• Painted the outside of the wheel
• Added new sinks in the former art room, in the kitchen and a sink for the new art teacher
• Touch up painting throughout the building

JR / SR High School
• All floors were resealed
• Gym was sealed with new finish
• Touch up painting throughout building

District Wide
• Replaced several portions of concrete along entrance roads, driveways and parking lots
• Added onto the storage shed so all equipment can be kept out of the elements
• Lights for trotter trail have been ordered and will be installed this fall
At a work session in early 2014, the ICSD Board determined that its top facility priority was to develop a plan to complete the goal of a single campus on the West side of town. The goal of a single campus has been a priority since the district purchased the 92 acres of land on the West side of town that adjoins the elementary campus and home of Leinbaugh Field. With the opening of the new JR / SR High School on the 92 acres in the fall of 2013, the district is now in the process of relocating all remaining district facilities to the West side of town to complete the single campus.
The district is currently constructing a new bus garage scheduled for completion in November 2014. This allows the district to dispose of the undersized bus garage located on the East side of town. The Final Push fundraising campaign that is currently underway is helping pay for the creation of new tennis courts, baseball / softball fields and turf at Leinbaugh Field. The recently completed installation of turf at Leinbaugh Field now allows multiple uses on the same field (soccer, football, band, etc.), which eliminates duplication from the separate soccer field on the East side of town. Now that the turf project is completed, the district is able to dispose of the old soccer field as well.

With completion of the single campus in process, the next facility related priority of ICSD is to implement air conditioning in the elementary buildings. “One of the Board’s priorities right now is to prepare the East and West Elementary buildings to be more energy efficient and have the correct controls in place. We can then make the larger purchase of a chiller which will provide an air conditioned environment at West Elementary,” said Russell Reiter, Superintendent. “East Elementary does not have the same infrastructure as West Elementary, so we are currently exploring installation of window air conditioning units at East Elementary”, added Peterson. The estimated cost to put central air conditioning in at East Elementary is in excess of $350,000. The cost of installing window units at East could be just 10% of that cost, or roughly $35,000.

Currently, the building and grounds department is in the planning stage to change out HVAC valves within West Elementary to digital controls. The district will be preparing climate control zones within the building by updating duct work, condensers and other necessary components.
The ICSD Board of Education is exploring options to expedite the implementation of air conditioning in both elementary buildings. Board President, Brian Eddy explained, “Some of our departments have done an excellent job of keeping expenses at a minimum and this has allowed us to consider reallocating some of those funds to this project. The Board will be discussing this further at a future meeting. ”

“The comfort and safety of our students and staff is one of our top priorities. We understand how important a comfortable environment is for the learning process. So, we are optimistic about getting this project completed as soon as possible,” said Superintendent, Russell Reiter.

For more information about this project, you may contact Superintendent, Russell Reiter at (319) 334-7400 or rreiter@independence.k12.ia.us. For more information about the Independence Community School District, visit www.independence.k12.ia.us.


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