St. Lucie Public Schools put together an energy advisory board, consisting of vendors, engineers, district staff, utility company personnel, architects, engineers, school board members and others, to address ways to reduce utility costs. Rather than just considering individual schools with immediate needs, the group outlined a long-term plan for the entire district, looking at systems that would need to be replaced in five, ten and fifteen years. They evaluated their replacement vs repair options, taking into account maintenance expenses and the age of the chillers, and analyzed life cycle costs of replacement chillers. Thermal energy storage was suggested as a sustainable solution for the district.
Pleased with its long-term relationship with Trane, which included excellent equipment performance, superior service and training for its technicians, the district asked Trane to bid on its HVAC upgrades. Trane presented a chiller plant upgrade with thermal energy storage, using energy savings and utility rebates to offset the cost of the chiller investment.
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