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A Change In The “Air” For New Silas Willard Building

WGIL Newsroom . Local News 219

One of the main selling points of the Galesburg School District’s Master Facilities Plan several years ago was the use of geo-thermal heating and air conditioning in all the upgrades made. Not any more.

The Galesburg School Board’s Building Committee this week decided to go with a more conventional heating and cooling system for the new Silas Willard Elementary School when construction begins, instead of geo-thermal like systems installed at Steele and Lombard Schools.

Russel Construction Project Manager Lee Marbach says costs for the more conventional “boiler-chiller” system are comparable to geo-thermal.

“The main difference is it adds a little bit of square footage space to the building for the boilers and chillers, but you’re not spending the money to put the wells in the ground so at the end of the day it is a little bit of a net savings,” says Marbach.

Marbach says that’s because you’re not spending money building underground wells with a traditional system like you are with geo-thermal.

He also says traditional systems are as energy-efficient now as they’ve ever been.

Traditional heating and cooling will be figured in by the time a set of design development meetings are held next month.