H-W buildings update

By Marcie Klomp

Howard Winneshiek Building and Grounds Director Larry Trende has been busy in the last six months making up lost ground. Maintenance at all centers had not been a top priority in past years, so he has been making lists of repairs that need to be done and fitting in the easy, inexpensive fixes with the bigger items.

At the Aug. 26 meeting, he gave the school board a list of items accomplished and future plans for each building.

Trende seems to be a glass is half-full guy. On the first day of school, Elma Elementary was without power for a few hours. “One good thing I learned with the power outage was that all the emergency lights were junk in Elma,” he laughed. He is in the process of getting them in working order.

The board was informed there was an increase in the cost of the playground equipment at Lime Springs-Chester Elementary and authorized $10,450 for cement for the equipment and $13,200 for a full-size basketball court.

Director James Kitchen and Principal Greg Adams will work with teachers and Trende on location of basketball court.

Board President Duane Bodermann asked Trende what he was doing about safety. Trende said an additional door was put in by the superintendent’s office and visitors can now be buzzed in at the K-8 building.

“Security cameras are working, and the new server is working well with all the new computers,” he added.

Since the end of February, Trende has accomplished many things in the buildings. He has quite a list for the future as well.

Lime Springs accomplishments

1. Set back stats installed on all HVAC units

2. Warm weather shutdown devices installed on boiler

3. Replaced heat pump in break room

4. Replaced water softener

5. Removed masonry chimney

6. Secured playground contractor

Future Plans

1. Install new manufactured chimney

2. Playground equipment to be reinstalled Sept. 10

3. New playground equipment to be installed Sept. 24

4. Insulate geo-source lines in tunnel

Elma accomplishments

1. Boiler burner retrofitted to LP

2. Warm water shutdown device installed

3. Thermostatic isolation valves installed on radiators

4. Batteries and replacement emergency lights ordered

5. Window repair kits ordered

Future Plans

1. Playground repairs at ECDC

2. Electrical updates

3. Air conditioning

K-8 Accomplishments

1. Variable speed drives installed on tower and gym air handler

2. Restroom stalls replaced on all five girls restrooms

3. Gym floor refinished

4. Three heat pumps replaced

5. New ceramic tile installed in lower elementary boys restrooms

6. Updated five classrooms with carpet to VCT tile

7. Lighting controls installed in restrooms

Future Plans

1. Outdoor lighting updated to LED

2. Air exchange system to replace fresh air handler

3. Outdoor exterior surface repairs (tuckpointing, caulking, etc.)

4. Replace more heat pumps

High School

1. New fire alarm system

2. Ceiling tile and air diffusers

3. Lighting controls in restrooms and hallways

4. New door locks

5. Roof repairs

6. Converted incinerator to cooler

Future Plans

1. Upgrade electrical in classrooms with underground shorts

2. Replace exterior windows

3. Recover and insulate penthouse roofs

4. Look into solar energy

Trende lives two miles south of Cresco, with his wife of 18 years, Diane, (they just celebrated their 20th class reunion from Crestwood) and children. Son Trevor is a freshman, and daughter Lauren is a fifth grade student

He came to his position with lots of experience. “I have been in the commercial HVAC/R field for the last 18 years as a service technician, working mainly at schools, hospitals, nursing homes and factories.”

He is enjoying his job at Howard-Winneshiek. “I am a very goal-focused person, and I have had a lot of them placed before me when I started. The more of them I accomplish, the happier I am.”

He added the district has a great staff to work with and a great board to work with, as well. “My staff who work with me are all great people and have helped out a lot as I have transitioned into this role.”

With Trende on top of things, building maintenance should continue to improve at all the buildings in the district.

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