The Central Arkansas Library System (CALS) consists of over 424,900 square feet of facilities spread across a variety of locations including fifteen libraries, support facilities, and the downtown Ron Robinson Theater. In 2017, CALS partnered with the Arkansas Energy Office to find an ideal solution for becoming more energy efficient and improve operations. After an evaluation of several qualified vendors, CALS selected Little Rock based Entegrity to perform a thorough audit to quantify the costs and benefits of a variety of improvement measures. After reviewing the results of the study, CALS Leadership decided to move forward with an energy savings performance contract where the savings generated from the installation were guaranteed to exceed the costs. With the upgrades now completed by Entegrity, CALS is guaranteed annual savings of $216,466, and lifetime savings of $3.8 million.
Throughout the 18 Central Arkansas Library System locations, nearly 6,000 lamps and fixtures were replaced with the latest in energy efficient LED Lighting. Further measures were taken to reduce energy, maintenance, and water costs, such as low flow water fixtures, new HVAC Equipment, and Utility Rate Corrections. The project came in under budget, allowing the Library System to dedicate the remaining funds to construct a 66kW solar array at the Hillary Rodham Clinton Children’s Library & Learning Center.
“This is a textbook example of how energy efficiency projects can not only pay for themselves, but redirect money back into the budgets of our public entities,” stated Entegrity Partner, Matt Bell. “I’m proud that Entegrity played a small part in the work that Nate Coulter and his incredible staff are doing in Central Arkansas. CALS plays a critical role in our community by providing so many of the needed cultural and educational functions that make our hometown so wonderful.”
In addition to savings measures, CALS also partnered with Entegrity to form a sustainability education program in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools, connecting youth learning with building operations. The program was customized to include sustainability throughout CALS’s events, marketing, youth and community engagement, interactive technologies, and long-term sustainability planning and performance. On November 16, 2019, these sustainability learning tools were on full display for Tinkerfest at the Hillary Clinton Children’s Library. Resources provided as part of this program included:
- Learning Lab’s K-12 Next Gen Science Standard lesson plans
- Building Learners resources and sustainability tracks
- Arc technology benchmarking and sustainability dashboard for three libraries
- Green lendables for the community to check-out (like solar training suitcases, IAQ test meters, and Watt Meters)
- USGBC Green Classroom Professional Certificate training course taught by Entegrity’s USGBC Faculty
“This is another occasion where CALS can work to serve the community while simultaneously being wise stewards of the public library’s limited funds,” said Nate Coulter, CALS executive director. “I’m excited we were able to include solar in this project, allowing our young patrons and their parents a chance to see a visible demonstration of clean, efficient energy technology.”