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Roberto Clemente School Roberto Clemente School Roberto Clemente School Roberto Clemente School

Project Details

Kagan Architecture

Construction Budget:
$31.4 million

High Performance Design
State of the Art Security
Under Budget/ Schedule
Hiring Goals Exceeded

Roberto Clemente Pre-K-8

The Roberto Clemente project originally called for renovating an existing school as new, increasing its natural light, fixing mechanical systems, and updating the original high school as a Pre-K-8 facility. When it was determined that building conditions made it impractical to do so, the decision was made to rebuild. The new 75,600 sf school features a central courtyard, a state-of-the-art library/ media center, computer labs, science labs, art and music rooms, and a gymnasium/ cafetorium with a convertible separating wall that can open the space up for use as a very large auditorium. This project meets State of Connecticut High Performance Building Guidelines, and is a tight envelope building meeting strict air change and blower door testing requirements. Kagan Architecture incorporated efficiency through design features such as maximized use of natural lighting (all luminaires are high efficiency fluorescent and LED) and various sustainable systems and materials such as low-e insulated glass windows. Clemente shares a Central Utility Plant (CUP) with Hill Central School. The CUP is a $2.8 million, 3000 sf project that represented the first investment of this type by a Connecticut school district. The building houses the equipment to provide both heating and cooling to both schools. By serving two major structures on one site, the CUP maximizes efficiencies and economy. The project required over 2,000 feet of underground piping throughout the site. The plant includes three boilers, one electric chiller unit, one absorption chiller unit, two cooling towers, and the ability to make and store ice in off peak hours to be used for cooling purposes during peak hours. The most impressive feature of the CUP is the use of a 400kw fuel cell that produces electricity by combining natural gas with oxygen. In this reaction, electrons are freed from the hydrogen in the fuel cell by a catalyst, and gain energy from the chemical reaction binding hydrogen and oxygen thereby providing a source for electric current. The exhaust of hydrogen fuel cells consists simply of hot water. This hot water is piped to the absorption chiller and reused during either the heating or cooling seasons. Since the only by-product of the fuel cell is usable hot water, this technology is considered one of the most efficient and green ways to provide power. The CUP’s fuel cell provides enough power to sustain both schools during peak usage, and has the ability to grid independent power to both schools in the event of outages.