Fairfield looks to get A/C in all school buildings

File photo of Timothy Dwight School on Redding Road in Fairfield.

File photo of Timothy Dwight School on Redding Road in Fairfield.

Genevieve Reilly / Genevieve Reilly

FAIRFIELD — Fairfield schools have wanted to look at air conditioning and fire protection in the buildings for some time, but a study has been delayed because of other priorities.

Now their number has come up. The Board of Selectmen has approved $152,400 to cover a facilities condition assessment from Diversified Technology Consultants Inc.

The study’s approval came in the same meeting as the selectmen’s vote to appropriate $36,000 for air conditioning in Fairfield Warde High School’s cafeteria.

The study “ is something that’s been on the operating side budget for a few years now but was kicked down the road as emergencies have arisen and funding was needed to do other projects,” said Angelus Papageorge, the schools’ executive director of operations.

He said that now those projects are finished, the study can go forward.

The study will pull together budget numbers and recommendations for “mechanical means of fresh air, air conditioning and fire protection for all its school buildings,” according to the request for proposal issued for the work.

It also will help the district determine if there are any issues or concerns about other building systems and how to address them, the RFP states.

“Included in this is not only air conditioning, but because buildings will have to be torn apart to add duct work and that type of stuff, we’re also asking them to look at sprinkler upgrades and LED light upgrades while being in there,” Papageorge said.

Of the 17 school buildings, four have partial building air conditioning because of new additions, another five have it in specific rooms and eight are new or newly renovated with full fresh air and air conditioning systems, said Andrea Clark, the district’s spokeswoman.

She said there wasn’t a particular issue that prompted the study.

“With the BOS approv(al) of the contract yesterday, we hope to get an award letter out shortly and begin the project, which will most likely run all summer,” Clark said Tuesday. “This study findings will assist with creating a timeline to add the project to the long-term facilities plan.”

kkoerting@newstimes.com