South / Regional Reports

Orlando School Balances Upfront Costs, Long-Term Payback

Deltona High School in Orlando, Fla., is investing in the comfort of its close to 3,000 students while also trying to balance upfront costs with a faster payback. The Volusia County School District has decided to update the HVAC equipment at the school to improve indoor air quality and give teachers more control over temperatures in classrooms.

The district purchased the highest efficiency equipment from Trane designed to decrease energy consumption by up to 20 percent. The district used existing cooling towers to lower upfront costs. In addition, the previous water source heat pump system was replaced by new controls and chillers that had 1,455 tons of chilled water capacity.

"All too often, the initial cost of a project drives the type of HVAC system installed," said Donald Sabiston, engineer of record for the school's HVAC renovation and president of Sabiston Engineering Group. "By applying its progressive mindset, Volusia agreed to an HVAC system that has a higher initial cost, but will last longer, provide better indoor air quality for the students, and operate more efficiently. The wide range of products available from Trane allowed us to specify equipment that will meet the demands of the school and pay back the additional initial cost more quickly."

The system incorporates a number of energy efficient features and an ability, according to the manufacturer, to minimize the amount of equipment that needs to be maintained. "The Trane DDC control system is designed to provide comfort control while allowing the owner to better manage, troubleshoot, and adjust the system either on-site or remotely," said Brian Cumming, project engineer of Brian Cumming & Associates. "These features result in an HVAC system that will provide dependable comfort for a life-cycle cost."

The project construction team consists of Turner Construction, Coastal Mechanical, and Trane Orlando.

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Publication date: 01/19/2004

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