Despite its limited $138-per-square-foot budget, Howell Township School District decided to design the first LEED silver-certified public schools in New Jersey and to ensure that rigorous educational standards were met in the process.
Technology is not just a tool in the media center, but an environment for students to reach their academic goals. A robust COST PER SQ FT$138.00FEATURED IN2005 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYLibraries/Media Centers with wireless network capabilities was designed to accommodate multiple computers and an instructor computer hooked up to a ceiling-mounted LCD.
Generous daylighting, high-efficiency indirect lighting with photosensors, and direct-digital-control HVAC with occupancy sensors maximize visual clarity and comfort while minimizing the use of energy. Placing the media center at the main entrance of the school extends the designers’ plan for a community school. Students, staff and community members use this room throughout the day.
The building is not flashy, nor does it offer dramatic evidence that it is an efficient, healthy and cost-effective building. But, when one observes the six thermal storage tanks, the direct evaporative cooler, the photovoltaics, the small residential-scale boilers and small chillers, and notices the lack of odors, the abundant daylighting and room photo/motion sensors and durable materials, one understands that this is not a typical elementary school—it represents a new generation of American schools.