Aluminum panels match new building Interior view. Diesel engines have mufflers to minimize noise.
Uninterruptible Power Plant
Project: Design a building to house power generation equipment and an enclosure for redundant HVAC condensers serving the telephone customer service center.
Focus: Provide full uninterruptible power for the Operations Center. House the equipment in a building that would be relatively low in cost but have an appearance compatible with the new addition. Minimize noise emitted from the building.
Solution: SafeCard selected a state of the art power backup and generation system. It not only provides uninterruptible, conditioned power to the building but also allows SafeCard to generate its own power and to buy power from the utility at a reduced "interruptible" rate. 

The building is faced with the same aluminum panels as the addition. A "corral", open to the sky and faced with the aluminum panels, hides the two large HVAC condensers. To control costs the panels were sized to minimize material waste in fabrication. This yielded a 10% savings in the cost of the building. 

The generators have mufflers to control the combustion noise from its diesel engines. However, the sound level at the radiators and inside the building is over 100 dbA. The site for the building is adjacent to a church and near one of the main staff entrances to the Center. It was imperative to control the noise level at the radiators and sound transmission from within the building. Insulation and layers of gypsum board reduce sound transmission through the walls.

Accomplishments: During the summer of 1996, SafeCard continued to operate uninterrupted despite 11 power outages. The noise level outside the generator building is well within the acceptable range. No complaints have arisen. The building and "corral" are an integrated part of the campus. The building cost was under budget.

Project size: 3,300 sf

© 1996, 2002 Davis Associates Architects & Consultants, Inc.
53 West Jackson Boulevard,
Chicago, IL 60604-3606
Phone (312)922-6050

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