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Open Roads Public School will consist of 16 regular classrooms, as well as a specially designed art room, computer lab, music room and drama/stage area, that are all usable as regular classrooms as well.
The gym is being constructed to NorWOSSA standards and size, which will allow the facility to host large scale sporting competitions that can encompass visitors from all around the region.
All busses will have off-street drop-off and pick-up areas, and the Kindergarten classes will have their own special entrances as well as fenced in playground areas.
“This school has what we call high volume, low velocity. So lots of air moving through great big ducts, but no noise because the velocity is a very slow speed. We’ve done that to eliminate noise so the teachers aren’t talking over and above the students, it’s a very comfortable system to work with,” said Rick Hill, East Area Supervisor for Keewatin-Patricia District School Board.
The school will be equipped with two high efficiency boilers made in Canada, which will allow for in-floor heating for the entire perimeter of the building as well as the Kindergarten rooms.
Hill says the school is very eco-friendly with the boilers, recycled materials and finishing materials to low cleaning of all the areas. “We’ve gone to products that don’t require a lot of intense cleaning and solutions, chemicals and waxes. All our hallways will be polished concrete through the commons area,” said Hill.
The school will have technology called “light harvesting”, which will have light sensors in the ceiling. Hill says as the natural light goes up outside, the inside fixtures dim down to balance out the energy consumption. There are sensors in the rooms to turn the lights on and off, as well as delays and overrides on the lighting systems.
The school will be facilitated with a solar system on the roof, but will not be used for pumping back into the grid. The use of the system will be for student learning purposes, as well as offsetting the energy costs of the building.
The school will be a wireless system, with computer labs fixed with wired equipment such as printers and scanners.
The music room has curved walls and special fixtures to accommodate proper sound flow, the art room has ceiling high windows to ensure ample natural lighting for the artists-to-be.
“All these new schools that we’ve done, whether it be the high school, New Prospect, Sioux Mountain, we bring forward all the best ideas, and we learn and grow from that. We implemented them in this building,” said Hill. “I believe it’s my favourite building, it has all the bells and whistles, technology, utilization, environment, all those things that we need to do for the society and for kids in this school.”
By Ally Dunham