Recently, I was asked at a networking event about the practice of annual coil cleanings. An owner inquired if he should be having the mechanical contractor clean the evaporator and condenser coils at his multiple office buildings every year. My inclination was to simply say yes! Of course! However, in truth, there are some factors […]

As new project delivery methods slowly get introduced to the Philadelphia region’s traditional construction market, I thought I’d share insights gleaned from a recently completed research project. Penn State and the University of Colorado Boulder recently collaborated on a two-year study of 200 capital facility projects. Sponsored by the Charles Pankow Foundation and the Construction […]

In advance of the recent Labor Day holiday, our crew rigged two major pieces of a hospital client’s Combined Heat and Power (CHP), or Cogeneration, system into place. The larger of the two packages weighed just under 100,000 pounds. The design-build project, conceptualized by Burns Mechanical engineers, will save our client nearly $700,000 in annual […]

As a result of the recent outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in the South Bronx that has killed at least 12 people, New York City has enacted a new law requiring the registration of cooling towers, fluid coolers and evaporative condensers with the Department of Buildings (DOB). The City seeks to track equipment location and maintenance. […]

We’re pleased to have been chosen as the design-assist HVAC contractor for the new practice facility for the Philadelphia 76ers. Design Assist is a role in which we provide engineering, cost, and constructability expertise throughout the design process to manage cost and performance goals. After installing the systems we will assist with commissioning to ensure […]

UV light safety

Occasionally building system products find widespread use before testing and maintenance standards work their way into the mainstream. Such is the case with the use of Ultraviolet (UV) lights as a means of destroying airborne viral, bacterial, and fungal organisms. The healthcare industry has been quick to adopt UV lights in air handling systems as […]

A confluence of economic factors, including low natural gas prices (see chart), government and utility incentives, and low interest rates, are causing an upsurge in the use of Combined Heat and Power (CHP) / Cogeneration applications. As an outcome, facilities with a year-round continuous requirement for electricity and heat that have deployed CHP technology are […]

Soft skills. These are two words not normally associated with project managers in the litigious, adversarial building design and construction industry. But if a leading-edge trend known as Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) becomes the norm, project managers, architects, and engineers displaying the strongest soft skills will be the big winners. I have shamelessly appropriated the […]

HVAC and lighting systems account for 75% of the energy used in the City of Philadelphia’s 270 million square feet of non-residential space. Energy use disclosure has confirmed that the opportunities for Philly’s building owners to reduce operating expenses are significant. We’re keeping a close watch on the situation, and this week Philadelphia heard some […]

Just as Chip Kelly’s high-octane Eagles offense begins with brilliance on the basics – an uncompromising focus on attention to fundamental details – a local, federally funded research consortium hopes to achieve the same end by delivering superior building energy performance through everyday off-the-shelf systems. As an advisory board member for Penn State’s PACE – […]