February 17, 2014 - Solar-powered Sandy Grove Middle School was the best K-12 education project built in the United States last year, according to a national construction industry magazine.
The Hoke County school is one of 20 widely varying projects singled out in the current issue of Engineering News & Record as "Best of the Best" in 2013.
The magazine said months of painstaking judging went into selecting the best examples of design and construction excellence among U.S. projects completed between July 2012 and July 2013.
Winners first were selected in each category in 10 regions. A different set of industry judges studied those winners to determine the national winners based on teamwork, innovation, quality and success in overcoming challenges.
Sandy Grove's energy efficiency caught the eye of ENR's judges.
Built with more than 2,300 solar panels, the school produces 30-40 percent more energy than it uses.
Surplus energy is returned to the power grid. As such, ENR said, Hoke County is expected to save about $16 million on its energy bills over the next 40 years.
That's about the cost of the school's construction. read more>>>