Penn State’s Visual Arts Building to Receive HVAC Replacement

HERSHEY, Pa. — The Board of Trustees Committee on Finance, Business and Capital Planning recently approved a design firm, final plans and the expenditure of funds to improve the comfort and energy efficiency of the Visual Arts Building at University Park by replacing the heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system.

The project will include a new hot water plant in the building, new insulated ductwork, a controls upgrade, piping replacement and two new air handlers. The building also will be connected to the campus chilled water system. Finally, electrical modifications will be completed to support the installation, while corridor ceilings will be replaced and new energy-efficient LED light fixtures will be installed.

The original scope of the project called for upgrades of the current HVAC system. However, subsequent investigation of the ductwork and infrastructure associated with those planned upgrades determined that a complete replacement is required, estimated at $8 million. Funding will come from Reserves for Capital Improvement, the Energy Savings Program and operating funds.

The committee approved the appointment of Trefz Engineering Inc. of Horsham, Pa., as the designer. Trefz Engineering previously was retained for the upgrade project through a qualifications-based selection process and has the technical capacity to design the additional work needed.