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Monday, December 12, 2011

Green Elementary School Planned for Fort Washington, MD

Avalon Elementary School Principal Dianne G. Bruce (left)
 helps student Vernon Wade, 9, of Fort Washington with his hard
hat during a Nov. 30 ceremonial groundbreaking.
 Photo: Greg Dohler/The Gazette
Officials broke ground Nov. 30 on a new 60,520-square-foot, single-story green building located at 7302 Webster Lane in Fort Washington, Maryland.  The new building with environmentally friendly features is scheduled to open by January 2013, with construction starting in January 2012.

Principal Dianne G. Bruce said the school’s current enrollment is 342 students, with about 22 teachers. The new building will be able to accommodate 449 students and 53 teachers. The total cost for the project is about $19 million, with the state contributing about $6.6 million, or 35 percent of the costs, with the county paying for the rest.

The new building will be designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification. LEED is a voluntary standard to support and certify successful green building design, construction and operations. LEED Gold certification is the second-highest level of achievement out of four levels — platinum, gold, silver and certified — with platinum being the highest. The new school will serve prekindergarten through sixth grade.

In 2008, the Maryland General Assembly passed a law that requires all school construction to meet LEED silver or gold standards. Rankings are determined using a 100 base point system in categories such as water efficiency, sustainability, and energy and atmosphere.

Avalon Elementary is being housed at the former Middleton Valley Elementary School site in Temple Hills at 4815 Dalton St., about three miles from the new school site, while construction is taking place.

AAEA President Norris McDonald lives in Fort Washington, Maryland. (The Gazette, 11/30/2011)

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