Public Sector


Howell School District

Howell School District

The Opportunity

Howell Public Schools needed help to accommodate more students in their growing community. At the same time, they wanted to address the need for ongoing infrastructure improvements in aging facilities. They decided to consider the benefits of developing a comprehensive energy program as a way to satisfy and fund the needed improvements. The District’s decision to use performance contracting to execute their energy program gave them the funding needed to perform the improvements identified below.

The Partnership

The performance contracting partnership between Howell SD and OpTerra was instrumental in bringing all the pieces together required to complete this project and guarantee the savings. As another key part of the program, OpTerra’s partnership with the District included energy behavior education for students and staff. This aspect of the partnership has increased awareness around the financial and environmental benefits of energy conservation district-wide.

The Impact

The $5.4 million project will generate energy savings of $489,456 annually over the 12-year program. Ongoing savings have been used to address other infrastructure issues, including: failing water towers, aging and inefficient boilers and chillers, inadequate control system, entry ways at many of the elementary schools along with many other needed improvements. The operations staff has also been able to better maintain and operate their facilities since the project’s completion.

The comprehensive energy scope at Howell SD enhanced the learning environment for students and faculty across the district, yielding continued positive feedback from the Board and the staff on the success of the project.

The Technical Scope

  • Enhanced building envelope
  • Improved internal lighting and controls
  • New and replacement boilers and chillers
  • New energy management system including controls and motion sensors
  • Improved exterior and parking lot lighting
  • Hot water piping / distribution
  • Water heater upgrades and overall conservation retrofits
  • Improved pool system performance