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Lehighton school district receives award

Published November 04. 2019 12:52PM

Lehighton Area School District has been named a 2019 Forever Green: U.S. Green Building Council leadership award winner.

One of 10 winners recently announced by the council, Lehighton will receive the Most Successful Community Engagement Award during a ceremony on Nov. 7. at Historic Ashland in Wrightsville.

“This award celebrates a project team that has demonstrated creative and innovative strategies for connecting either with their internal or external community through a building project,” the council stated in a press release.

Lehighton has completed several building projects in the past five years. It built a new elementary center and renovated its middle and high schools.

The award will be presented to EI Associates; Lehighton Area School District; Baker, Ingram & Associates; Gatter & Diehl Inc.; Advanced Foodservice Solutions; and Quandel Construction Group Inc.

“I want to thank the entire team of staff, students, community members and board members who have volunteered their time so diligently over the past six years to these building projects,” Superintendent Jonathan Cleaver said. “We’re very honored to be one of the only schools in the state honored by the council for our projects.”

The district has also received its LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification for several of its major building projects.

LEED is a rating system used to evaluate the environmental performance of a building. Projects earn points for environmentally friendly actions taken during construction and use of a building.

In 2015, Lehighton approved $25.7 million in renovations to both buildings with the McClure Company installing a four-pipe central heat pump system in the schools for $7.72 million. Because it was an energy savings, or ESCO, project, McClure guarantees the district over $80,000 per year in utility savings.

The elementary center project eliminated fuel oil and liquid propane gas as primary energy sources in lieu of natural gas, which was aimed at reducing energy consumption. According to EI Associates, other cost savings measures included a high-performance HVAC system, energy efficient lighting, building orientation providing natural daylighting, a modern thermal envelope further contributing to heating and cooling savings, and fixtures exceeding building code requirements to reduce water use by over 30 percent annually.

Other 2019 U.S. Green Building Council award winners include:

• RE Farm Cafe receiving the Green Building of the Year Award

• State College Area High School receiving the Rise to the Challenge Award

• 78 Trade Center receiving the Exceptional Implementation of Sustainable Technologies Award

• Presbyterian Senior Living — Windy Hill II receiving the Building Performance Award

• Spring Creek Elementary School receiving the Green Schools Award

• Veterans Affairs Clinic at Willow Valley receiving the Community Champion Award

• DCNR receiving the Climate Champion Award

• High Street Residence Hall at Dickinson College receiving the Innovation in Residential Building Award

• Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency receiving the People’s Choice: Sustainable Leader

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