DBR Named Best Firm to Work For & Hot Firm

DBR is proud to announce that we have won the Best Firm to Work For and Hot Firm Awards by Zweig Group. The BFTWF award will be the third consecutive year for the firm, while this is DBR’s first year to win the Hot Firm award.

“The people of DBR know that we are one of the Best Firms to Work For. We are working together to improve the quality of life in the communities that we serve by creating healthy, comfortable buildings with minimal impact on our natural environment. We are investing in ourselves every day to become better people, better colleagues, and better consultants.”

– Brian C. Uhlrich, CEO

 

About the Best Firms to Work For Award

The Best Firms to Work For award recognizes the top AEC firms in the US and Canada based on their firm culture, workplace practices, employee benefits, employee retention rates, professional development, and more – from both management and staff perspectives.

 

 

About the Hot Firm Award

The Zweig Group Hot Firm List recognizes the 100 fastest-growing AEC firms in the United States and Canada. These firms have outperformed the economy and competitors to become leaders in their chosen fields.

 

The complete list of Zweig Group’s 2023 award winners can be found here.

Q&A with Partner, Kenneth Roland

Kenneth (Kenny) Roland, PE serves as a Partner in DBR’s Dallas office and has been with the firm since 2009. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering from Kansas State University and a Masters in Fire Protection Engineering from the University of Maryland. Kenny obtained his PE license for Texas in 2013 and is currently licensed in over 30 states.

Kenny directs MEP engineering services for projects in North Texas and directly oversees all aspects of design to ensure that our team delivers innovative and accurate solutions. He participates in design meetings and acts as an advocate for the Owner’s requirements and vision. Kenny has extensive experience in hospitality, multifamily, K-12 education, government, and industrial projects.

Kenny enjoys his daily interaction with clients and colleagues and his engagement throughout the entire project life cycle and has played a vital role in the growth of the Dallas office, which has flourished during his tenure. His positive attitude, visionary outlook, and endless energy make him a valued leader in our firm.

 

Q&A with Kenny:

 

Q: As a leader, how do you mentor the designers of today to help them become better leaders for tomorrow?

A: As a leader, mentoring is an essential aspect of fostering growth and development. Everyone is unique and custom-tailored strategies are required to be effective for each individual in their journey to success. Below are a few key strategies I have learned to foster growth.

  1. Lead by example: Demonstrate strong leadership qualities through your own actions and decisions. Show designers how to handle challenges, make effective decisions, communicate clearly, and prioritize goals. By being a role model, you inspire the team to emulate your positive leadership traits.
  2. Provide constructive feedback: Regularly provide specific and constructive feedback on their work, highlighting their strengths and areas for improvement. Help them understand the impact of their design decisions and how it aligns with the broader goals of the organization. Encourage a growth mindset and emphasize the importance of continuous learning.
  3. Encourage autonomy and ownership: Foster an environment where designers feel empowered to take ownership of their work. Provide them with autonomy to make decisions, take risks, and learn from their experiences. Support their innovative ideas and encourage them to explore new approaches to problem-solving.
  4. Offer growth opportunities: Identify opportunities for designers to enhance their skills and broaden their perspectives. Encourage them to take on challenging projects, collaborate with other teams, or participate in industry events. Provide resources such as training programs, workshops, or conferences that can help them expand their knowledge and networks.
  5. Cultivate communication and collaboration skills: Effective leadership involves strong communication and collaboration skills. Encourage designers to actively participate in cross-functional collaborations, share their ideas, and listen attentively to others. Help them develop their presentation skills, facilitate productive discussions, and build relationships with stakeholders.
  6. Foster a culture of continuous learning: Encourage designers to engage in ongoing learning and professional development. This can involve reading industry publications, attending relevant webinars or workshops, or pursuing advanced education. Create opportunities for knowledge-sharing within the team, such as lunch-and-learn sessions or internal workshops.
  7. Provide mentorship and coaching: Assign a more experienced designer or leader as a mentor to guide and support the growth of junior designers. Encourage open dialogue, regular check-ins, and the sharing of experiences and insights. Additionally, offer coaching sessions to help designers identify their goals, develop leadership skills, and overcome challenges.
  8. Promote a diverse and inclusive environment: Emphasize the importance of diversity and inclusion within the design team and the organization as a whole. Encourage designers to consider diverse perspectives and incorporate inclusive design practices into their work. Foster an environment where everyone feels valued and included, which contributes to the development of well-rounded leaders.

Mentorship is an ongoing process that requires regularly assessing the progress of each designer, providing guidance, and adapting your mentoring approach to suit their individual needs and aspirations. By investing time and effort into mentoring designers, you can play a significant role in shaping them into effective leaders for the future.

Q: What are some best practices you have used to develop excellent customer relationships?

A: Developing excellent client relationships is crucial for the success of any business and each client is unique and has a different ‘love’ language, if you will. Below are some best practices I have used throughout the course of my career.

  1. Active listening: Listen attentively to your clients and seek to understand their needs, concerns, and feedback. Practice active listening by paraphrasing and clarifying their statements to show that you value their input.
  2. Prompt and personalized communication: Respond to client inquiries, concerns, or feedback in a timely manner. Personalize your communication by addressing customers by their names and using a friendly, empathetic tone. Tailor your responses to their specific needs and provide relevant information or solutions.
  3. Empathy and understanding: Put yourself in the client’s shoes and show empathy for their challenges or frustrations. Understand their goals and motivations and demonstrate that you genuinely care about their experience with your product or service.
  4. Consistency across channels: Ensure consistent and cohesive client experiences across all communication channels, whether it’s in-person interactions, phone calls, emails, social media, or online chat. Align your brand messaging and values across channels to provide a seamless experience.
  5. Proactive problem-solving: Anticipate client needs and proactively address potential issues before they arise. Provide clear and comprehensive information about your product or service to minimize confusion and prevent problems. If an issue does occur, take ownership of the situation and work towards a resolution promptly.
  6. Continuous improvement: Regularly evaluate and assess your client relationship management processes. Collect feedback from customers through surveys, interviews, or feedback forms, and use that information to identify areas for improvement. Actively implement changes based on customer insights to enhance their experience.
  7. Personalized client experiences: Get to know your client on a personal level. Learning their likes, dislikes, hobbies, etc. enables you to leverage your status with your client and elevate your standing. Knowing them across all levels makes difficult conversations easier and opens the door for deeper connections and opportunities. In time, they may even become one of your best and lifelong friends.
  8. Building trust and transparency: Establish trust with your clients by being transparent and honest in your interactions. Clearly communicate your policies, scope, and any potential limitations. If mistakes occur, admit them, take responsibility, and work towards a resolution. Trust is the foundation of strong client relationships.
  9. Client feedback loop: Encourage clients to provide feedback and actively seek their opinions. Regularly follow up on feedback received and communicate how their input has been implemented or considered. This reinforces the notion that their voice is valued and helps build a sense of partnership.
  10. Employee training and empowerment: Invest in training and empowering your employees to deliver exceptional customer service. Equip them with the knowledge, skills, and authority to address customer needs effectively. Foster a client-centric culture where employees understand the importance of building strong relationships.

Building excellent customer relationships is an ongoing effort and there is no ending. Continuously adapt and refine your practices based on client feedback and changing dynamics. By prioritizing the client experience and implementing best practices, you can cultivate loyal clients and foster long-term relationships.

 

Have questions? Give Kenny a call:

Kenneth L. Roland, PE
Partner
214.217.9500
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View our Hospitality + Multifamily experience

The Allen Condos, Hotel & Retail Pavilion

DBR is working with HOK and DC Partners to provide mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineering services as well as energy modeling for The Allen, a new mixed-use development in Houston, Texas. DBR completed two phases of this development, a retail pavilion, and a tower with a luxury hotel operated by Thompson Hotels and private condominiums.

The retail pavilion is a 3-story, 51,340-square-foot building that comprises retail spaces, restaurants, and a high-end fitness facility. Also incorporated into the pavilion are a 33,065-square-foot below-grade parking garage and a 16,860-square-foot roof terrace overlooking public areas.

The pavilion features street-level restaurant space with expanded patio space to accommodate outdoor dining and access to the nearby Buffalo Bayou Park. The detail of electrical power and landscape lighting are provided along pedestrian pathways and for public art installations which encourage community activity around the pavilion site and connections to the park.

Located at 1775 Allen Parkway, the Residences at The Allen and the Thompson Houston Hotel will serve as the anchor for this master-planned development. The 35-story, 570,340-square-foot hospitality and residential skyscraper houses 99 luxury condos, 16 penthouses, and 172 hotel rooms. The Thompson Hotel will occupy floors 8-15, while floors 16-35 will house The Residences at The Allen.

Amenities for the condo/hotel building include 24-hour concierge and room service, a spa, a pool deck with cabanas, individual balconies with lavish plunge pools, pet washing stations, storage units, and more. Both the hotel and condos will have access to restaurants, views of the city skyline, terraced gardens, a 69,962-square-foot basement parking garage, and a 129,102-square-foot podium parking garage, which connects to the pavilion for easy access.

The pavilion opened in late 2021 and the hotel and condos are expected to be completed by late 2023 to early 2024.

 

Development Team

Owner DC Partners
Architect HOK
General Contractor G.T. Leach Constructors
Civil Consultant Langan Engineering
MEP Engineer DBR
Structural SCA Engineers

 

View more Hospitality + Multifamily projects 

Q&A with Senior Project Manager, Hugo Avila

Hugo Avila, PE serves as a Senior Project Manager based in DBR’s McAllen office. He has over 27 years of experience in the building design and construction industry. Hugo holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas at San Antonio and has been a licensed Professional Engineer since 2002.

Hugo’s project experience includes MEP system design as a consulting engineer in addition to several years on the client side of the business as the District Staff Engineer for McAllen ISD. The experience working for a client organization has benefitted Hugo as a consulting engineer by helping him to understand the Owner’s perspective. This experience also taught him the value of building strong industry relationships.

After returning to a consulting role, Hugo spent the next several years working primarily in the Higher Education market for clients including the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Texas A&M University – Kingsville, and South Texas College. Hugo’s experience as an Owner’s representative and his years of experience in building system design have shaped his approach to delivering successful projects to our clients. His commitment to meeting the Owner’s needs and providing friendly service make him a valuable part of the DBR team.

 

Q&A with Hugo:

 

Q: DBR recently established an office in Laredo, Texas. What do you see as key opportunities for the Laredo office in the next 5 years?

A: We hope to continue to foster relationships with some key clients in the Laredo area. We expect to see new opportunities in K-12 schools, higher education, and local government work.

Q: What have you found yourself focusing on most during the last few months given the current industry challenges and what kind of development is the K-12 market experiencing?

A: Many South Texas school districts have taken advantage of ESSER grant funding to repair, replace, or improve their HVAC systems. We have been busy helping several school districts manage this work. The cost of construction materials and the delivery time for major mechanical and electrical equipment has been a challenge. We are attempting to remain informed so that we can guide our clients to make the best decisions about their facilities.

Q: What are some proven methodologies you have used to ensure DBR delivers projects that go above and beyond our client’s expectations?

A: Ultimately, the key to exceeding expectations is good communication. It is always important, and especially so when working with prime clients, to understand the Owner’s needs, clearly define the project scope and goals, and make sure that everyone is on the same page. It is also critically important that we follow our own strict quality assurance plan in order to deliver the best value to the client.

 

Have questions? Give Hugo a call:

Hugo Avila, PE
Senior Project Manager, Associate
956.683.1640
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View our K-12 Education experience

Cypress-Fairbanks ISD – Roy J. Sprague Middle School

DBR is working with Arcadis IBI Group to design Cypress-Fairbanks ISD’s Middle School #20. Sprague Middle School will be the third and final school to complete the Bridgeland Educational Village site and will serve approximately 1,350 students to accommodate the area’s rapid growth.

DBR provided MEP engineering and technology consulting services for the new 280,000-square-foot, three-story middle school for the Cy-Fair district. This school was the second phase on the Bridgeland site. The first phase consisted of Bridgeland High School and Wells Elementary School. The new middle school will be connected to the existing elementary school through the cafeteria. A large, motorized partition between the elementary and middle schools allows flexibility to open the cafeterias into one large space for after-hour events or to keep them separated for day-to-day use.

Sprague Middle School has been designed in accordance with TX-CHPS criteria. The project was designed to incorporate sustainable design features which would enhance the learning outcomes for students. Natural daylight is provided in classrooms with smart lighting controls, and energy-conserving mechanical systems are used to reduce operating costs while enhancing health and productivity. Other design features include educational displays and demonstration areas to teach about high-performance buildings, reduced stormwater runoff, reduction of potable water usage, and the use of low-emitting, rapidly renewable materials. Additionally, the shared use of a common central plant and service yard with the elementary school allows for operational cost-efficiency.

The central plant was originally constructed along with the elementary school in the first phase. Along with the middle school in the second phase of work, the central plant will be expanded to provide additional heating and cooling capacity. A new electrical service will be provided, including a new utility transformer, main switchboard, and 450 kW generator for backup power. The fire pump installed in the elementary school was designed to serve both buildings.

Collaborative flex spaces of various sizes are located throughout the academic portion of the facility and the library is centrally located within the school, serving as the “hinge” of the academic wings. The middle school includes gyms, science classrooms, art rooms, a cooking lab, band halls, career technology education spaces, large group instructional classrooms, a track and field area, a soccer field, and an illuminated middle school/junior varsity football stadium.

The school is being built by S&P Construction with an estimated opening date of August 2023.

 

View more K-12 Education experience

Designing MEP Systems for CTE Spaces

An entire generation of experienced laborers and tradesmen is retiring at a faster rate than the new generation joining the industry. Shortages in skilled labor have led to increased wages in these career fields and have resulted in higher prices for the goods and services which require their services. Therefore, enhancing the perceived value and allure of vocational and trade programs is critical now more than ever.

CTE (Career and Technical Education) spaces are specialized areas in educational facilities dedicated to teaching students a range of technical skills related to specific career fields. These spaces can include laboratories, workshops, and classrooms, and they are designed to accommodate many types of equipment, machinery, and materials.

To ensure the safety and functionality of CTE spaces, MEP (Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing) engineers must adhere to specific requirements that govern the design and installation of MEP systems in these areas. Engineers must exercise their creativity to design a custom-tailored solution to fit the specific program and instructor and to provide flexibility for evolving technologies and changing educational techniques.

In this article, we will explore the MEP requirements for CTE spaces in more detail.

Montgomery ISD – Lake Creek High School | Montgomery, Texas | Huckabee

HVAC Systems

One of the primary considerations in designing CTE spaces is the HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) system. Because CTE spaces often generate a significant amount of heat and pollutants, proper ventilation and air quality are critical. The HVAC system must provide adequate airflow and filtration to maintain a healthy and safe indoor environment. High ventilation rates often result in high energy demand, so it is important to consider energy-saving strategies, thus adding complexity to the HVAC system design.

Additionally, HVAC systems must accommodate the specific requirements of the equipment used in CTE spaces. For example, solutions for ventilation requirements of welding stations vary due to owner preferences, station quantities, and the budget available. Similarly, the disposal method of metal shavings or sawdust can vary due to machine type and layout, owner preferences, and the budget available. Other specific ventilation needs include vehicle engine exhaust and laboratory fume hoods. Other specific HVAC requirements may include HVLS (high-volume/low-speed) fans for comfort control in large shop spaces and end switches on operable overhead doors to turn cooling systems off when doors open.

Brazosport ISD – Brazoswood High School CTE Center | Clute, Texas | VLK Architects

Electrical Systems

Electrical systems are also a critical component of CTE spaces. The electrical system must support the power requirements of the equipment and machinery used in these areas. This includes not only the amount of power required but also the type of power, such as (1) single-phase or three-phase power, (2) voltage, and (3) NEMA configurations of receptacles. Specialized machines often have specific power and grounding requirements for the machines to function as designed. Some equipment is fixed in place, while in many lab/workshop spaces, it is advantageous to provide receptacles on cord reels to allow for flexibility. Understanding the use and workflow process of equipment and machinery aid in the delivery method provided for electrical connections.

Safety is an important consideration in the design of electrical systems for CTE spaces. For example, electrical outlets must be in easily accessible locations and equipped with ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) in wet environments to protect against electrocution.

Houston ISD – Energy Institute High School | Houston, Texas | VLK Architects

Lighting Systems

Proper lighting is critical for safety and functionality in CTE spaces. Lighting must be designed to provide adequate illumination for the specific tasks being performed in each area. Dimming and zoning of fixtures to switches offer flexibility where workshop spaces may be used as classrooms.

Lighting must also be designed to minimize glare and shadows, which can create safety hazards and affect the accuracy of the work being performed.

Brazosport ISD – Brazoswood High School | Clute, Texas | VLK Architects

Plumbing Systems

Plumbing systems are another essential component of MEP design for CTE spaces. Depending on the type of CTE space, plumbing requirements can vary significantly. For example, a laboratory might require a range of specialized plumbing features, such as gas lines for Bunsen burners, water lines for sinks, compressed air lines for tools, and waste lines for chemical disposal. Emergency eye wash and shower stations are common safety features.

Automotive and metalworking workshops might require specialized plumbing to accommodate the use of coolant fluids, compressed air, and gases used for welding and other processes.

 

Commissioning

The commissioning of MEP systems is required by the International Energy Conservation Code. In addition to ensuring that major energy-consuming equipment is functioning properly to optimize energy use, the commissioning process is a key step in providing safe CTE environments. Ventilation systems and lighting controls must function properly to allow students to work safely. During the commissioning process, these systems are tested to confirm that they are operating properly.

 

Conclusion

The demand for a skilled labor force has resulted in the need for modern educational spaces where students can learn specific technical career skills. The mechanical, electrical, and plumbing requirements for CTE spaces are complex and specialized areas of building design. To ensure the safety and functionality of these spaces, we must consider a range of factors. By working closely with architects, facility managers, educators, and contractors, we can design and install MEP systems that meet the unique requirements of each CTE space and allow the instruction of a new generation of skilled workers.

 

Have questions? Give Jackie a call:
M. Jackie Chang, PE
Senior Project Manager, Senior Associate
713.914.0888
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View our K-12 Education experience

Q&A with Principal & Healthcare Market Leader, Mark Stringer

Mark Stringer, LEED AP, HFDP, is a highly experienced MEP engineering Principal with over 40 years of expertise in the field. Throughout his career, Mark has demonstrated a deep commitment to quality and a focus on understanding the client’s needs. He has consistently delivered successful solutions for a wide range of clients, with a focus on the healthcare industry during the last 30 years.

With his wealth of experience in the design of HVAC, plumbing, and fire protection systems, and his dedication to staying current with the latest industry trends and advancements, Mark is a trusted leader in the healthcare engineering community. His extensive design experience includes outside air ventilation, humidity control, and anti-mold design, and a specific knowledge of the pressurization requirements associated with isolation rooms and operating rooms.

Mark is known for following through on his commitments and remaining true to his word. In his free time, he enjoys traveling and he plays golf whenever he can.

 

Q&A with Mark:

 

Q: What are some best practices you have used to develop excellent client relationships? How do you serve as an advocate for your clients and deliver them a successful project?

A: Communication is key! Listen to the client’s needs and try to exceed their expectations. We work with many different personalities in this industry but the common factor is generally that people want to be heard and respected. I try to keep an open mind and not go into meetings with preconceived notions regarding solutions, systems, or system types. I do provide the client with the advantages and disadvantages so that when a decision is made the potential ramifications are known.

Q: As a leader in the Healthcare + Lab market, what do you see as key opportunities in the near future?

A: The resources now available with DBR along with the expertise in healthcare that we bring to the table will allow us to tap into new clients and new markets. The healthcare experience and presence in Houston, Austin, San Antonio, and El Paso will open doors for more opportunities.

Q: What have you found yourself focusing on most during the last few months given the current industry challenges and what kind of development is the Dallas market experiencing?

A: The most recent challenges have been related to supply chain issues and long lead times for equipment. We have worked with clients in preparing early release packages to mitigate the long lead times but also have stayed in touch with vendors and manufacturers to understand their issues driving long lead times and work around them where possible. Dallas continues to be a diverse market and healthcare design and construction remain strong.

 

Have questions? Give Mark a call:
Mark Stringer, LEED AP, HFDP
Principal
713.914.0888
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View our Healthcare + Lab projects

Baylor University Medical Center Emergency Department

DBR worked with Freeman White/T. Howard Associates to provide mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineering design services for the $47 million expansion and renovation of the Riggs Emergency Department on the main campus of Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.

This expansion/renovation tripled the size of the department from 25,000 square feet to 75,000 square feet.  The project included adding 70 new treatment rooms, three radiology rooms, two CT scanners, and a 4-bay trauma room to the Level 1 Trauma Center. The footprint divides the department into functional zones and care team areas. The support areas are located within the center of each zone. The division of the floor into zones provides the ideal environment for efficient and effective patient care.

The newly expanded emergency department offers advanced technology, equipment, and services to support both routine and trauma care:

  • Electronic medical records with physician order entry
  • Two CT scans – one a 64-slice CT
  • Four radiology suites
  • Ultrasound within the department
  • Centralized telemetry
  • On-site lab
  • Stat scan for trauma patients
  • Disaster preparedness components including decontamination rooms, containment rooms, a command center, and showers for biological agents.

The need for immediate access to imaging equipment led to the incorporation of a Lodox Stat Scan between the two sets of trauma bays as well as digital imaging installed on overhead railing systems in the four trauma spaces.

This expansion gave Baylor the opportunity to broaden its trauma capabilities, expand its minor emergency care center, and add additional patient care areas.

Have questions? Give Mark a call:
Mark Stringer, LEED AP, HFDP
Principal
713.914.0888
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View more Healthcare + Lab projects

Meet DBR’s Newest Associates

At the end of 2022, two employees were named Senior Associate, and seven employees were named Associate. We at DBR would like to congratulate and thank these team members for their exceptional performance! Together they demonstrate their unwavering commitment to excellence and service to our clients.

“At the end of the day, the real difference between DBR and other consulting engineering firms is our people. Each of these individuals we have recognized as Associates have demonstrated exceptional commitment to serving our clients and their colleagues. We have great people, and therefore our clients get the best service.”

– Brian Uhlrich, CEO

 

Greenhill School – Valdes STEM + Innovation Center

Greenhill School has provided a rigorous college-preparatory curriculum to students in the Dallas area since 1950. Today, the private school in Addison, Texas serves approximately 1,350 students in Pre-K through 12th grades. When Greenhill recognized the need for a modern facility to teach and inspire students in the areas of science, engineering, technology, and mathematics they went to architecture firm, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. The result is the new 52,000-square-foot Valdes STEM + Innovation Center.

“This new STEM facility will help our students become innovators, entrepreneurs, collaborators, and problem solvers, as they pursue exciting new pathways in science, technology, engineering, and math.”

– Lee Hark, Greenhill Head of School

DBR began work on the design of the new facility in May of 2021. We were excited to help Greenhill to meet their goal to create a state-of-the-art STEM learning facility with a low carbon footprint. The Valdes Center is intended to inspire innovation and therefore the building itself was intended to be a model of innovative, progressive design. The new facility features a mass timber structure, which significantly reduces the embodied carbon of the structure and provides opportunities to expose the structure. Exposing the structure also lead to some interesting opportunities with the MEP systems.

A raised floor system is featured throughout most of the building, allowing for the exposure of the wood structure overhead. Underfloor air distribution is used, which allows for efficient air distribution and the maximum number of temperature control zones. The raised floor plenum is used to route electrical conduits, plumbing piping, and low-voltage cabling for data, AV, and security systems.

A shop space was created in the building for various technical curriculum opportunities. Transformers were provided to deliver 230V and 240V power to specific equipment loads. Compressed air and dust collection systems were provided with outlets throughout the shop.

Audio-visual systems were provided to inspire and enable student presentations. Flexible AV presentation spaces feature mobile interactive displays, local sound systems, wireless connectivity, and local AV controls.

The existing fiber optic cable plant on the site was routed through the footprint of the new building. We provided new underground duct banks to re-route the cable plant and extended the fiber cabling to the existing MDF rooms and to the new building to allow integration of the telecom and fire alarm systems with Greenhill’s existing networks. The main electrical equipment is located in the basement of the building. Due to the potential risk of flooding, our team coordinated with the construction team to detail the sealing of wall penetrations and the use of water-tight conduits, turning the basement into a storm shelter. A standby generator set was provided with an enclosure to meet ICC 500 requirements.

Energy-efficient equipment and systems were prioritized to minimize the operational carbon footprint of the building. The predicted EUI for the Valdes Center is 14.6 kBTU/sf/yr. This represents a 73% improvement over the minimum energy code requirements. Solar thermal collectors are provided to supplement the domestic water heating load. Solar photovoltaic modules are also provided to offset a portion of the building’s electricity. A high-efficiency air-cooled chiller charges an ice bank thermal storage system which is used to reduce the peak electrical demand.

The excitement is building at Greenhill School for the completion of the Valdes STEM + Innovation Center later this year. We are proud of our efforts to reduce the carbon emissions associated with this facility as an example to the students and the community.

 

Development Team

Owner Greenhill School
Architect Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
MEP Engineer DBR Engineering Consultants, Inc.

 

View more K-12 Education projects