School Planning & Management

JAN 2013

School Planning & Management is the information resource for professionals serving the K-12 education market. Covering facilities, security, technology and business.

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the renovation of the existing building was completed at approximately $200 per square foot. According to architect Robin Breslin, of Breslin Ridyard Fadero Architects, adaptive re-use of an old building most significantly facilitates a "green" construction process. "Instead of building a new structure, which would require the use of newly manufactured materials from natural resources, we reused existing warehouse structures," says Breslin, noting these existing structures had inherent features that were advantageous for supporting the school's programs. "Easy ground-level access, a necessity for the school's technical programs, such as the automotive trades, was readily available," explains Breslin. "Tall ceiling spaces, as typical in warehouse facilities, allowed new HVAC, lighting and other infrastructure to be easily constructed within the shell of the building." T&M Associates, of Plymouth Meeting, Pa., and the law firm, Riley, Riper, Hollin and Colagreco, of Kennett Square, Pa., assisted with the civil engineering and land development phases of the project. The design incorporated best practices for storm water management and site reconfiguration to accommodate school bus traffic. It also took a sustainable approach with the installation of a rooftop 87-kW solar photovoltaic system. The facility has been outfitted with the infrastructure needed to meet the technological demands of today's modern educational facility. Wireless networking is a key component and its coverage is building-wide, fast and reliable. The new building is directly connected to CCIU headquarters, thus providing shared common use spaces like the fitness center and café. Likewise, the secondary and post-secondary programs can utilize the intermediate unit's 25,000-squarefoot conference center, which hosts approximately 50,000 people each year. But most importantly, the space-saving Recycled Building. The Chester County Technical College High School (TCHS) Brandywine Campus, in Chester County, Pa., is an exceptional example of adaptive re-use, turning an abandoned 200,000-square-foot manufacturing facility into a hybrid model for career and technical education. efficiencies of the new campus facilitate a multigenerational learning environment for its nearly 1,000 students, ranging from preschoolers to adults. "At one end of our building, aspiring chefs in the college's new Culinary Arts program cook up a storm in professional kitchen facilities, while at the opposite end, the Head Start program prepares economically disadvantaged preschool students to successfully enter kindergarten," says Dr. O'Brien. "Meanwhile, in the middle, the graphic artists, the mechanics and the animal science technicians of tomorrow are thriving in classrooms specific to their high school career and technical program." By working together and breaking the educational mold, the intermediate unit and the community college shared costs and expertise in order to best serve Chester County. "CCIU's state-of-the-art facility presents the college with a cost-effective way to offer students, both young and old, an array of education and training options in an environment that is most conducive to learning," says Dr. Jerome Parker, president of DCCC. "It is a model of shared services where a college that needed to expand and a high school that needed to be built construct a slightly bigger facility at an incredible cost-savings to the taxpayers," says Dr. O'Brien. "What resulted is a guarantee that our graduates will be prepared for lifelong learning, for careers in high-priority occupations and for post-secondary education." These cost-saving benefits of adaptive re-use allowed for the transformation of an old factory that once employed skilled laborers into a new educational environment that now prepares the skilled workforce of tomorrow. SPM >> Joseph Lubitsky is the director of Administrative Services at the Chester County (Pa.) Intermediate Unit. He has planned and coordinated the financing, design, approval and construction of numerous projects in the last 30 years as an administrator for public school districts and in private industry in the Philadelphia region. JANUARY 2013 / SCHOOL PLANNING & MANAGEMENT 67

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