A group of education officials representing districts across the country will be touring a Warren County elementary school Friday to get a close-up look at an energy-saving material used in construction. They’re visiting to learn more about the construction of net zero schools, or schools that produce enough energy on site to cover their needs.
Jennings Creek Elementary will be a net zero ready school, meaning it’s built in a way that allows it to eliminate the cost of energy. The school is one of a many in Kentucky using insulated concrete forms, or ICF, to reduce energy costs. Warren County is home to the nation’s first net zero school--Richardsville Elementary, which opened in 2010.
Brett Ruffing is a spokesman for the Ready Mix Concrete Association.
“You would have thought it would been either California or over on the east coast somewhere but no, it came from the good old Commonwealth of Kentucky,” Ruffing said.
He said building with insulated concrete forms is easier and less expensive in Kentucky because builders in the state already have a lot of experience working with the material.
“Because there’s the contractor experience, because there’s the design experience now. Building with the ICF is actually less expensive than the other construction type,” He said
Ruffing said schools using insulated concrete forms should last for more than 100 years.