Knox County Schools Improve Learning Environment and Upgrade Equipment

Knox County Public Schools increased student comfort, addressed operational issues of mechanical equipment and upgraded HVAC systems. In addition, the new systems were integrated into a common building automation system with web access. All of the improvements have had a positive impact on the district’s energy usage and general fund.


  • Old Equipment – Maintenance and reliability issues with HVAC equipment
  • Utility Costs – Rising energy costs
  • Learning Environment – Lack of modern HVAC and controls technology caused comfort issues for students and staff
  • Solution:

  • Equipment Upgrade – New geothermal HVAC systems with web-based controls in three schools and partial HVAC renovations in two others
  • Lighting – Complete lighting replacements in seven schools, exterior and gym lighting replacement at one school
  • Single point responsibility of construction
  • Results:

  • New HVAC equipment and controls have improved the learning environment
  • New windows for improved building envelope
  • Upgrades to controls to achieve common platform between all schools
  • 20-Year energy savings guarantee
  • Annual measurement and verification and training program
  • Current savings after two years of measurement and verification
    • Electric usage savings = 6,608,311 kWh
    • Electric demand savings = 3,474 kW
    • Natural gas savings = 109,410 therms
    • Energy cost savings = $614,503
    • Exceeding guarantee by 22%