The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Montour County

July 3, 2014

District pouring $6 million in renovations into Danville High School

— DANVILLE — When Danville High School opens for classes this year, it will be with several million dollars worth of renovations that will make the building more energy efficient and comfortable for students and staff.

The improvements to the building’s lighting, heating and air conditioning, ceiling tiles and roof began right after school closed for the year, said Rick Engle, maintenance director for Danville’s school district.

The project’s “main goal is for energy efficiency,” Engle said, but the upgrades were already needed as some of the school’s equipment was reaching the end of its life span.

The district expects to save $2.8 million over the course of 20 years due to the greater efficiency of the lights and HVAC machinery.

The total cost of the renovations is approximately $6 million, with some of that money also going toward improvements at the district’s building on Front Street, the former Danville Elementary School. The majority of the funds are going toward the high school.

Due to how closely the wiring for HVAC and lighting in the school are connected to the ceiling tiles, all three upgrades had to be done at once, Engle said.

LED lights are being installed throughout the building. While lighting wasn’t a major complaint in the building, according to Engle, the light fixtures in the building needed to be replaced.

“Every place in this building gets new ceiling and ceiling tiles,” Engle said. So far, 66,000 pounds of ceiling tiles have been removed from the building, along with 26,000 pounds of ceiling grid. The ceiling tiles and the lights in the school haven’t been changed since 1989.

All the tiles are being recycled into new ceiling panels, while the grids are being recycled into metal.

The building’s old ductwork and old air handlers being removed from the school’s roof will be recycled.

“Nobody’s getting rich over it, its just the right thing to do,” Engle said.

The new tiles will be coated with a fungal-resistant chemical to make them last longer. “In a building this size, you always have ceiling leaks,” Engle said.

The roof will also be receiving a new white coating.

New windows will be installed throughout the school as well. Some windows haven’t been replaced since the building opened in 1974.

“The (high school’s) comfort overall will be better” following the project, Engle said. It’s nice to do a project “that will improve building comfort and save some money,” he added.

Email comments to rstoneback@thedanvillenews.com.

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