Energy efficient school opens


A newly constructed public school is the first in Center Grove Community School Corporation (CGCSC) to feature state-of-the-art energy efficiency technology.

Designed for 800 students, Walnut Grove Elementary in Bargersville is 110,000 sq.ft. and boasts a solar array,geothermal heating and cooling, and other features to reduce energy and paper consumption. The prairie-themed landscaping around the school utilizes native grasses and plants, which reduces maintenance costs and allows for the preservation of wildlife habitats in the area.

The school was designed by Lancer+Beebe Architects.

Beyond the energy efficiency features, the school’s design incorporates a secure vestibule at the main entrance, reinforced severe weather refuge areas, electronic locks on classroom doors and a separate entrance that allows for access to only the gymnasium and cafeteria for after hours safety features.

The classrooms include cubbies for student materials, flexible furniture, and smart boards on castors for mobility that connect with student devices. There are sliding glass doors are frosted to reduce distraction when closed, but can open to allow the classroom to spill into the collaboration commons. The glass allows natural light to enter the classroom from the solar tubes in the hallway. Each room is equipped with tunable classroom lighting that can be adjusted to four functions: focus, work, normal, and calm.

“We did a lot of research and pulled together teams of teachers and leaders in each area to provide input on designs for everything from classrooms and shared spaces to lunchrooms and traffic flow,”said Walnut Grove Elementary principal Brian Proctor.

“We are all thankful for the School Board and our community for providing us with such a wonderful building for our students.”



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