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Ajax served as the Construction Manager for a new Central Energy Plant which serves the existing Pinellas County School Board Administration Building. The new stand-alone plant is located west of the administration building, incorporating material that allows the CEP’s architecture to remain consistent with the architecture currently onsite.
The new plant replaced the original chillers housed in penthouses at the existing administration building. The existing HVAC system remained fully operational until the new CEP was completed and the plant was connected to the existing piping system inside the building. The schedule called for the new plant to be tied into the building during spring break of 2017, when occupancy in the building was limited. During this one week period, the new plant was tied into the building’s hydronic piping system when the old chillers and associated equipment were removed.
The energy efficient mechanical design includes the latest geothermal technology to produce condenser water, thereby eliminating the need for cooling towers. This system also includes three geothermal supply wells, along with three geothermal return wells and the associated pumps and piping systems. To generate chilled water, the new energy plant houses two 400 ton centrifugal chillers and one 250 ton air cooled chiller. In addition, a new 600 KW diesel generator was included as a part of the new plant, providing increased emergency power capacity to the administration building.