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Renovated New Orleans Care Facility Reopens, Reuniting Residents and Staff

Trane helps provide new quarters for St. Margaret's Daughters' Home

NEW ORLEANS, Sept. 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Residents and staff of St. Margaret's Daughters' Home in New Orleans will be reunited in a temporary facility this month, two years after they evacuated in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

The 116-bed eldercare facility was destroyed when Katrina's storm surge overwhelmed the levees in the city's Ninth Ward. While everyone at St. Margaret's was evacuated safely before the storm, federal disaster officials deemed the building unsalvageable after it was flooded and filled with four-to-six feet of standing water for two weeks.

St. Margaret's officials immediately began the search for a new home - a process that culminates at 10 a.m. (CDT) today with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the new temporary facility at 3419 St. Claude Ave.

The building, which formerly housed the Bywater Hospital, required extensive renovations to support an eldercare facility. The conversion was completed with grant money from the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) and a pivotal team of reconstruction partners, including Trane.

Since 1931, St. Margaret's, a nonprofit facility, has offered affordable, quality nursing care delivered with compassion and personal attention. Before Katrina struck, St. Margaret's provided residents with the conveniences of home, like a sunroom overlooking a lush garden and family rooms complete with big-screen TVs.

"Residents and staff are a tight-knit group," said Larry Stansberry, chief executive officer of St. Margaret's. "Those relationships survived the storm. It became my No. 1 priority to get everyone under one roof again after this horrible tragedy. I consider the residents and staff of St. Margaret's to be like family and I wanted to bring them back home."

Once officials decided upon the former hospital building, they quickly began renovations. Partway through the reconstruction process, workers discovered a sorely outdated heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system that would not meet building requirements. HVAC is the heart of the mechanical system in a healthcare facility and is vital to providing residents and staff with a clean, comfortable environment.

After learning the HVAC system needed replacing, Stansberry approached Trane with the problem. Trane Rental Services quickly drew up a lease agreement for the system that would meet the facility's performance requirements until the permanent facility is complete.

"If not for Trane's generous offer to lease us an HVAC system, I would have needed to start at square one again to find another suitable temporary location," said Stansberry. "Thanks to Trane's help, the St. Margaret's family will be back together once again."

Trane Rental Services provides short- and long-term temporary cooling or heating solutions for emergency and planned situations. Trane's modern fleet of HVAC systems are prepped and ready to ship at a moment's notice to manufacturing facilities, hospitals, universities, ice rinks, on-location television shows, tournaments and special engagements.

Trane has worked with health care facilities for more than 40 years, providing a range of systems, services and solutions to optimize healing environments, improve patient outcomes, increase comfort levels of staff and patients, and optimize facility investment. Nearly half of all healthcare facilities in North America rely on Trane systems for their comfort needs.

Trane, the air conditioning systems and services business of American Standard Companies (NYSE: ASD), is a leading global provider of indoor comfort systems and comprehensive facility solutions. Its offerings include energy efficient heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems, service and parts support, advanced building controls and financing solutions. Each Trane system is designed to meet the specific needs of customers who want heating, cooling, dehumidifying and air cleaning systems for residential, commercial, institutional and industrial applications. In 2006, Trane contributed $6.8 billion to American Standard's total sales of $11.2 billion. For more information, visit the Trane Web site at

SOURCE American Standard Companies Inc.
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