The VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System (ECHCS) provides health care services to veterans across the Colorado front range. The ECHCS facility at 9th Avenue and Colorado Boulevard in Denver consists of a Medical and Surgical Center and Community Living Center. 360 Engineering was hired by the VA, as the prime consultant and mechanical engineer, to determine why the building’s heating water pipe system was failing and to offer solutions within their budget.
The 9-floor hospital building had a separate Central Utility Plant, with piping running in chases to the main building. 360 Engineering conducted thorough field investigations of the piping, including sending samples of the failing heating water piping to an analytical laboratory. Through careful analysis and coordination with the VA facility maintenance team, the cause of the failing piping was determined to be oxygen pitting.
360 Engineering provided multiple solutions, and the pros and cons of each solution, including any possible downtimes, impacts to operations, and associated costs to mitigate effects. Also, 360 Engineering designed each chase individually, with its own price, which allowed the VA to select the best solution for their budget. During construction, 90% of the work was completed without entering occupied space. Stairwells and the building’s exterior walls were utilized for the selected chases, and all chases were designed to work with the existing architecture.