Work for New Chilled Water Facility Begins

Construction of Chilled Water Plant #3 will serve future needs of campus

Chiller Plant No. 3 will be located on Anderson Street and is expected to be completed in late 2020. Rendering courtesy of Duke Facilities Management.
Chiller Plant No. 3 will be located on Anderson Street and is expected to be completed in late 2020. Rendering courtesy of Duke Facilities Management.

The first step in the construction of Duke’s next major utility project will begin Monday on Central Campus.

Construction of Chiller Plant No. 3 on Anderson Street is slated to begin in January 2019 and is expected to be completed in December 2020. But work on the underground infrastructure that will connect the plant to existing systems begins Monday, resulting in the first phase of parking and traffic adjustments.

With the expansion of Duke University Hospital, a new engineering building on West Campus and additional projects placing increasing demands on Duke’s chilled water system, the Board of Trustees approved the construction of Chilled Water Plant No. 3 during its September meeting.

Chilled water is an efficient way to cool buildings and, by adding a new facility that will help supply the loop of pipes that feed buildings on East and West campuses and the hospital, Duke expects to save around $50,000 annually on electricity due to more efficient pumping of chilled water and a reduction in system pressure.

“Chilled water is a big energy saver,” said Stephen Carrow, project manager with Duke Facilities Management Department. “It takes half the energy to cool buildings with a central system than it does with a standalone system per building.”

The 34,409-square-foot facility will feature cooling towers, chillers, storage buildings for the High Voltage team and space for expansion. The site on Anderson Street was chosen due in large part to its proximity to an electrical substation.

The first round of work will consist of installing two 36-inch underground pipes that will connect Chiller Plant No. 3 to the existing chilled water loop near Trent Hall. This utility work will start several phases of street and parking adjustments.

Beginning Saturday, the lots behind the apartments at 2011, 2015 and 2017 Yearby Avenue and 1914 Lewis Street will be closed due to construction. All vehicles must be cleared from these lots by 3 a.m. Monday, October 22. These lots are expected to reopen in early 2019, though the work on underground pipes will lead to other parking and traffic adjustments around Sarah P. Duke Gardens and Flowers Drive next summer.

Alternate parking options will be available throughout Central Campus.

Affiliated Engineers will handle the engineering needs of the project. FLAD Architects, which worked on the redesign of the West Campus Steam Plant and the expansion of Chilled Water Plant No. 2, will handle other elements of the design.

For parking and transit advisories related to the project, please visit parking.duke.edu and follow Working@Duke.edu on Twitter.