Science Area Chiller Plant
The project is a new 20,000 ton capacity university chiller plant constructed as part of a reclamation masterplan of a triangular five-acre industrial brown-field site along a municipal pedestrian greenway. The masterplan includes a parking garage, a vest pocket park and the new plant. The garage and park were designed by others. The plant is connected to the university’s chilled water loop via a new set of 1500’ long pipes buried in the greenway.
The building is designed for eight sets of chillers and corresponding cooling towers, pumps, etc. to be installed and brought on line over time as campus demand for cooling increases. The distribution loop, building shell and landscaping are complete. Installation of the first round of equipment will commence in the fall of 2011.
The building form steps down in section from mid block to the linear park. In similar fashion, the plans steps back along the diagonal of the greenway. An undulating landscaped berm softens the transition from building to pedestrian way and broadens the perceived width of the greenway.
The cooling tower yard abuts the garage and is surrounded by tall walls on three sides to shield the towers visually and acoustically from greenway. The chillers sit on individual concrete tables independent of the first floor structure of the Chiller Hall. Pumps are located below.
Streetside large overhead doors provide access to the cooling tower yard, chiller hall and maintenance shop. Windows are limited to the office and employee lounge areas on the street side for security and operational reasons. North facing roof monitors provide daylight into the chiller hall and shop.
The steel framed building is clad with a striped, two-color brick with dark gray cast stone copings, aluminum wall panels and zinc clad roof monitors.