Middle School Thrives in New Sustainable, Durable Building


  • Durable design helps manage maintenance costs.
  • ICF construction adds environmental sustainability.
  • Project timeline aided by ICF use.
  • Concrete Producer Central Builders Supply
  • General Contractor eciConstruction
  • Location: Northumberland, PA
Central Photo 7

The Situation

Shikellamy School District faced one of its biggest financial decisions in decades. Middle school students were sharing a building with high school students, and needed a building of their own. Searching for a way to spend its dollars most wisely, Shikellamy School District decided to construct a new building that would house students for many years to come. The district had limited finances for the project and required a durable design to help manage future costs.

“The insulation value of ICFs contribute to energy cost savings for both residential and commercial buildings.”
~ Susan Armstrong, Central Builders Supply Company

The Solution

Architects McKissick Associates designed a three-story building that was cost-efficient, durable and economically sustainable. Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs), earth berming, and rain gardens with underground storm water infiltration came together to meet all of the district’s needs with added features. In addition, the aesthetics of the building harmonize with the architecture of the town.

During construction that began in 2014, general contractor eciConstruction faced the challenge of a brutally cold winter. However, the ICF construction contributed to staying on schedule. The use of super insulated ICF construction and a crystalline waterproofing admixture not only enhance the environmental benefits sought by the school district, but also provides significant energy cost savings. The combination of ICF walls and poured concrete walls combine to total 4000 cubic yards of concrete.

The finished three-story building has two wings and houses about 650 students in grades six through eight. It includes two technology education suites, six science labs and 24 classrooms.

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