Cedar Ridge School District of Newark is moving forward with a comprehensive energy efficiency project that will save the district nearly $4 million in energy, water, and maintenance expenses a 20-year timeframe. The project, to be conducted by Entegrity Energy Partners of Little Rock, will begin this fall, and is expected to conclude in the summer of 2017.
Among the various improvements recommended by Entegrity after a 90-day investigation of the district’s facilities, Cedar Ridge will be replacing major mechanical equipment at the high school and elementary campuses; converting the entire district to LED lighting technology; installing scheduled temperature controls across the district; and replacing over 100 flush valves and faucets with low-flow systems. As part of its contract, Entegrity has guaranteed Cedar Ridge over $145,000 in annual energy and maintenance expenses, a sum that will more than cover the district’s annual debt service for the project.
“I am so excited to partner with Entegrity,” said Andy Ashley, Superintendent of Cedar Ridge Schools. “Many of our facilities are over 30 years old, and are in desperate need of updating and maintenance. The projected financial savings these upgrades will generate makes this a very attractive venture. As a steward of public dollars, I think the community will be proud of this work.”
In addition to the annual energy and maintenance savings, Cedar Ridge is also poised to receive over $100,000 in co-funding from Entergy Arkansas, Inc., which provides electricity to all district facilities. These funds will be disbursed through the utility’s CitySmart program, which is designed to encourage Entergy ratepayers to be more efficient with energy use.
“The combination of co-funding from Entergy, historically low interest rates, and strong savings potential makes this project a win-win for all parties,” said Rob Guthrie, Director of Business Development for Entegrity Partners. “We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of it.”
With this project, Cedar Ridge becomes the latest school district in Arkansas to embrace the state’s energy performance contracting program. This mechanism—enabled by a legislative rule in 2005—allows schools to use a pay-from-savings approach when undertaking facility improvements.