6330 Newtown Rd. Ste 400 Norfolk, VA 23502 phone: 757-461-6757 fax: 757-461-8516
Central Utility Plant
Sentara Norfolk General

Description and Features

Vansant and Gusler served as the prime design agent for this project to provide a central utility plant to serve Sentara Norfolk General Hospital as well as Eastern Virginia Medical School and Children's Hospital of the Kings Daughters (CHKD). The original project cost was approximately $3.3 million. The plant was designed for an ultimate capacity of 6,000 tons of refrigeration and 120,000 pounds/hour of steam to service a medical complex of 2,000,000 square feet. Due to site constraints, the design team was tasked with providing an aesthetically pleasing facility located on a limited land area with an underground utility system located under major streets in a congested area.

The resolution was to reduce the basic footprint to 7,200 square feet, with the ground floor providing the area required for boilers, offices and workshops. Chillers and switchgear were located on the second floor with cooling towers on the third level. The physical arrangement is such that no mechanical equipment (including boiler stacks) can be seen except from above the building. The air intakes for the cooling towers were integrated as an architectural feature of the building. All systems were automated and controlled from a central control console. The underground "utilidor" was designed to utilize reinforced concrete piping of 6, 7 and 8-foot diameter which could be placed in short sections. Although the streets were saturated with underground utilities, all work was accomplished without any major relocation of piping or underground power lines.

Vansant and Gusler has been integrally involved with the medical complex as it has expanded over the years. We have provided engineering for several additions of equipment in the central utility plant and the extension of the underground distribution system, as well as facilities served by the central utility plant such as the Clinical Sciences Building, Lewis Hall, renovation of Jenkins Hall and the Norfolk Mental Health Building.

Project Facts

Location: Norfolk, Virginia

Owner: Sentara Norfolk General

Type: Renovation

Gross Area:2,000,000 sq. ft.

Floor Levels: 3

Owner's Budget: $3.3 million

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