Susquehanna Health, Energy Service Center
Inspiration with Precast
The new $17 Million Energy Service Center at The Williamsport Hospital and Medical Center campus is part of a long-range plan, known as Project 2012, to reconfigure and expand Susquehanna Health, a three-hospital system in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The new co-generation facility will leave a smaller “carbon footprint” on the world by cutting carbon emissions by 50 percent and saving the health system an estimated $540,000 in annual energy costs.
The Energy Service Center replaces an older power plant that provided heat from two 1940 fossil fuel boilers. This new facility includes two 15,000 volt services and two diesel generators providing enough power to support the equivalent of 1,000 homes. The 2-megawatt co-generation system not only generates electricity, but also captures and reuses waste heat to provide all of the hot water for the hospital. In addition, the new system provides humidity and temperature controls for more than 70 “specialized patient environments” throughout the hospital.
Precast’s Versatility Shines
Architectural precast was chosen for the building because of its aesthetic versatility, as well as its sustainability, durability, economy and ease of construction. Tilt-up, insulated sandwich wall panels were used to create the entire façade. Red, thin brick panels match the existing brick of the hospital and deeply scored white Portland panels complement the hospital’s limestone features. The contrasting red and white panels also reduce the apparent scale of the building by dividing it into two sections. To create a classical front for the service center, gray precast panels combined with gray louvers and gray low-e glass form three identical bays. Three stainless steel boiler stacks on the roof reinforce the formal composition below while expressing the function of the building.
Success with Precast Continues
The success of architectural precast on the new Energy Service Center has inspired the use of precast for the new Patient Tower, another phase of Project 2012 being constructed on the hospital campus, and making precast a new building standard for the medical center.