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Renovations mean school office 'camps' out

Eddie Robinson stands by the new air-conditioning unit recently installed at the Rock Hill school district building. The renovated units are expected to save energy costs and improve air quality at the district office.
Eddie Robinson stands by the new air-conditioning unit recently installed at the Rock Hill school district building. The renovated units are expected to save energy costs and improve air quality at the district office.

Rock Hill school district staffers are spending the summer at "Camp Ebinport," also known as Ebinport Elementary, becoming acquainted with the children's fish, turtles and other aquarium residents.

That's because what staff now calls "the old" district office on Anderson Road is undergoing extreme renovation to save energy costs and improve air quality.

The ceiling has been removed so that new duct work can be installed. Major heat and air components formerly located on the building's roof have been replaced, and most of it moved inside the building to spare maintenance time and expense. New lighting also is being installed.

"There will be individual heat and air control in different parts of the building now," said Mike Armour, district operators director. "There will be better air circulation, and the new ducts will provide a cleaner work environment."

The roughly $990,000 for the rehab, mostly to lighting, HVAC and accompanying ducts, is coming from the $92 million bond package voters approved in 2005, Armour said.

The district last year entered a guaranteed energy savings contract with Cary, N.C.-based Noresco, which expects to save the district $1.8 million in energy costs over the next 18 years with projects such as the one at the district office. Noresco is installing lights and other fixtures designed for efficient energy consumption districtwide, according to staff in the district's business and financial office.

One bonus is that the new equipment is quieter, meaning it will be easier for the public to hear at meetings in the board room.

It took several days to move staff and equipment to the elementary school when school was out. It all will be repeated in the reverse direction in about three weeks.

The goal is for the "old" district office to reopen July 27 with all of the improvements, said Eddie Robinson, district operations manager.

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