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TO BE REPLACED: Outdated windows at LaFayette Lanier Elementary School will be replaced later this year with similar, energy efficient ones.

LaFayette Lanier school windows getting replaced

LaFAYETTE — The LaFayette Lanier Elementary schoolhouse is still largely in its original state, only lightly updated since the building’s designation as a historical landmark in 1992 by the newly founded Historic Preservation Commission.

This will change in the coming months.

Officially announced by Superintendent Dr. Kelli Hodge during last Wednesday’s school board meeting, LaFayette Lanier’s original windows from 1935 will soon be replaced with newer, updated models.

“This has been a project I have been trying to accomplish for several years and I am very glad that it is finally going to happen,” said Hodge. “This will not only provide a higher quality environment for our kids, but also it will provide a maintenance free solution.” 

Because of its designation as a historical landmark, any attempts by the Chambers County School Board to update the windows have been shot down by the Historic Preservation Commission, until now.

After the original Langdale School Building was leveled by fire in 1934, development on the new school was started on the same site. LaFayette Lanier Elementary School as we now know it was opened in 1935.

The City of Valley describes the two-story building as “a triumph of architectural beauty and an inspiration to educators, students and area citizens.” It was designed by Atlanta architect R. Kennon Perry and sports a formal facade, a gabled roof and nine over nine Austral windows.

While the majority of the school has held up nicely, the windows are outdated and cause issues for the school.

“[Their age] has been a big problem with these windows we’ve had in the past,” said LaFayette Lanier’s Principal Rusty Newton. “These are single pane windows so now that we are a controlled climate on the inside, especially during the winter time, they sweat.”

Newton said that the original windows also pose a potential safety concern.

“In a lot of the rooms, under the windows has been painted so many times that the wood has swelled, so you really can’t open them up anymore,” Newton said. “If, god forbid, something were to happen and you had to get out of the window, we couldn’t get out unless you started breaking them.”

An architect was brought in by the school board to assess the needs of the building and determine how to replace the windows while keeping the historical value that LaFayette Lanier Elementary holds.

“[The Historic Commission] wanted to keep the integrity of the building and to keep it looking as close to normal as possible,” Newton said. “The people of the community, they cherish their old building, they went to school here. They didn’t want to see it lose its appeal with the way it looks, and I understand that. The new windows are going to look pretty much identical except they will be metal clad and energy efficient.”

Superintendent Hodge and the school board worked with the Historic Commission to ensure the school would stay on its registry after the update.

“The new windows will allow us to provide a more comfortable environment while also being more efficient,” added Superintendent Hodge. “It will also improve the looks of the exterior of the building. The new windows will never have to be painted.”

The update is scheduled to happen during this year’s Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

This will change in the coming months.

Officially announced by Superintendent Dr. Kelli Hodge during last Wednesday’s school board meeting, LaFayette Lanier’s original windows from 1935 will soon be replaced with newer, updated models.

“This has been a project I have been trying to accomplish for several years and I am very glad that it is finally going to happen,” said Hodge. “This will not only provide a higher quality environment for our kids, but also it will provide a maintenance free solution.” 

Because of its designation as a historical landmark, any attempts by the Chambers County School Board to update the windows have been shot down by the Historic Preservation Commission, until now.

After the original Langdale School Building was leveled by fire in 1934, development on the new school was started on the same site. LaFayette Lanier Elementary School as we now know it was opened in 1935.

The City of Valley describes the two-story building as “a triumph of architectural beauty and an inspiration to educators, students and area citizens.” It was designed by Atlanta architect R. Kennon Perry and sports a formal facade, a gabled roof and nine over nine Austral windows.

While the majority of the school has held up nicely, the windows are outdated and cause issues for the school.

“[Their age] has been a big problem with these windows we’ve had in the past,” said LaFayette Lanier’s Principal Rusty Newton. “These are single pane windows so now that we are a controlled climate on the inside, especially during the winter time, they sweat.”

Newton said that the original windows also pose a potential safety concern.

“In a lot of the rooms, under the windows has been painted so many times that the wood has swelled, so you really can’t open them up anymore,” Newton said. “If, god forbid, something were to happen and you had to get out of the window, we couldn’t get out unless you started breaking them.”

An architect was brought in by the school board to assess the needs of the building and determine how to replace the windows while keeping the historical value that LaFayette Lanier Elementary holds.

“[The Historic Commission] wanted to keep the integrity of the building and to keep it looking as close to normal as possible,” Newton said. “The people of the community, they cherish their old building, they went to school here. They didn’t want to see it lose its appeal with the way it looks, and I understand that. The new windows are going to look pretty much identical except they will be metal clad and energy efficient.”

Superintendent Hodge and the school board worked with the Historic Commission to ensure the school would stay on its registry after the update.

“The new windows will allow us to provide a more comfortable environment while also being more efficient,” added Superintendent Hodge. “It will also improve the looks of the exterior of the building. The new windows will never have to be painted.”

The update is scheduled to happen during this year’s Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.