McKinstry and Fremont RE-2 School District Partner on Utility Savings Project

Solar ground-mounted PV at Fremont High School, courtesy of McKinstry.

McKinstry, a national construction and energy services firm, and Fremont RE-2 School District, in consultation with the Colorado Energy Office, have partnered on a $3.2 million project that includes a ~500kW solar PV ground-mounted array to serve the high school and nearly $350,000 in technical services including a two-year student and staff educational program. 

“McKinstry is committed to helping our K-12 partners across Colorado identify opportunities to modernize their facilities while simultaneously making them more sustainable,” said Leslie Larocque, McKinstry’s vice president, Energy & Technical Services for the Mountain Region. “Together we are engineering solutions that allow communities to offer the best educational environment possible, and to improve energy efficiency with zero cost burden for taxpayers.”

McKinstry will enhance multiple Fremont RE-2 School District facilities through lighting upgrades, HVAC replacements and renovations, weatherization improvements, hot water heater efficiency upgrades, and a behavior-focused energy awareness and operational efficiency program.

The project was able to leverage a grant of nearly $600,000 from the Colorado Department of Education’s BEST program and approximately $580,000 in incentives from Black Hills will save the District nearly $140,000 per year in utilities to help offset the overall total project costs. After construction, the project will generate over $140,000 in savings from lower utilities per year for the district.

“Colorado rural school districts face many challenges, often resulting in difficult decisions about addressing or deferring maintenance of facilities. Because this project is fully funded through guaranteed savings, we can address these critical improvements and enhance the educational environment for our students and staff,” said Dr. Brenda Krage, Florence-Penrose School superintendent.

Since Colorado established its Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) program in the mid-1990s, 152 public jurisdictions – including 58 school districts – have worked with energy services companies, like McKinstry, to save more than $34 million in annual utility costs, 193 million kWh of electricity and more than 507 million gallons of water.

McKinstry has extensive experience serving K-12 school districts across the country. To date, the company has completed nearly 600 K-12 energy projects for more than 450 school districts nationwide.

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