Safer, Energy-Efficient Hospital Infrastructure

McKim & Creed is partnering with the University of North Carolina (UNC) Hospitals to provide mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection engineering for various medical facility improvements. The nearly $1 million contract addresses the hospitals’ chilled water infrastructure, fire/smoke dampers and waste anesthesia gas disposal (WAGD) system.

“The partnership between the UNC Hospitals and McKim & Creed is very important,” said Matt Daves, PE, senior vice president and business unit director with McKim & Creed. “These facility upgrades will provide an even safer, more energy-efficient environment for UNC’s patients and employees.”

Chilled Water Infrastructure

The chilled water infrastructure project began by implementing a process for updating chilled water flow diagrams and schematics. McKim & Creed surveyed existing chilled water plants, secondary and tertiary pumps and distribution systems in eight hospital buildings. Additionally, the design team is providing engineering services to upgrade the secondary chilled water pump speed/staging controls in the chiller plant, increasing the capacity of secondary chilled water loops (onsite and in the hospitals) and upgrading the tertiary chilled water bridge piping controls.

Fire/Smoke Dampers

McKim & Creed replaced, relocated and provided fire-rated assembly modifications for fire dampers, smoke dampers and combination fire-smoke dampers and related utilities. The project team manually verified the proper installation of the dampers (meeting all pertinent codes) and identified ductwork systems missing fire/smoke dampers.  Additionally, McKim & Creed ensured that all hospital walls were sealed in accordance with UL protection details, providing wall assembly modifications as needed.

Waste Anesthesia Gas Disposal (WAGD) System

McKim & Creed was responsible for assessing the WAGD connections in place across the UNC Hospital main campus. A WAGD system pulls waste anesthetic gas out of spaces where inhalation anesthetic agents are administered and pumps it outside. McKim & Creed’s design team determined locations in need of upgrades, retrofits or new connections, and evaluated alternatives for spaces with mobile anesthesia carts. McKim & Creed is currently working on a project to implement upgrades to the campus WAGD system as a result of the campus assessment.