Towson Family Center Y

Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning, and Plumbing Systems

The Towson Family Center Y project involved a $1,900,000 construction of a 48,000 sq. ft. fitness and learning center facility for Central Y of Maryland located on Chesapeake Avenue in the heart of Towson, Maryland. Mechanical Engineering & Construction Corp. (MEC²) was the mechanical contractor responsible for the plumbing, heating, ventilating, air conditioning, and control systems. This construction project included transforming an existing space in a residential area into a state-of-the-art fitness and learning facility comprised of a swimming space consisting of a lap pool and a fun pool, open area fitness space for cardio workouts and weight training, play areas for young children, family meeting spaces, multi-purpose rooms for learning and training, a cycling suite, and support locker rooms for men, women, and families. This project will be certified LEED Silver by USGBC.

Construction was an intense coordination process with the owner, facility staff, general contractor, architects, commissioning agent, and the sub-contractors to build a fitness facility to provide the latest advances offered for the public. The project site required maximum focus on site cleanliness and safety requirements due to the location in a residential area; the project created minimal environmental impacts to the existing area during construction.

The HVAC system serving the Towson Y facility provides year-round temperature and humidity levels that meets or exceeds all applicable code and industry standards as defined by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Inc. (ASHRAE). The system utilizes (5) high efficient DX packaged, gas fired, variable speed roof top units with energy recovery wheels coupled with fan powered terminal units that provide independent and accurate zone control. The VAV system provides for energy efficient system operation. The cooling system rooftop capacities provide approximately 200 tons of cooling for occupant comfort; a dedicated pool dehumidification unit was provided to directly handle the HVAC needs of the pool and supporting spaces. The overall HVAC system serving the building is monitored and controlled by a direct digital computer based control system which coordinates the function of all mechanical components to assure economical and reliable operation. The system may be monitored within the building and remotely on campus for equipment alarms or operating criteria outside of pre-set levels. This system aides in the energy management of the facility.

Challenges to this $1,900,000 mechanical undertaking included the underground plumbing coordination, working in an active residential community, with the scheduling of construction tasks for successful mechanical system completion without impeding the process of the other subcontractors. Specific challenges were overcome by intense scheduling and coordination between the general contractor and the project subcontractors. This project was completed within the specified timeframe. Currently, an expansion to this facility is underway due to the overall success of this building.

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