Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Innovative central utility plant keeps Phoenix Children’s Hospital up and running continually, efficiently, and sustainably
At a Glance
- $10.9 million — Projected energy and operational cost savings over 15 years from the new central utility plant featuring an innovative design and the latest technologies from Johnson Controls.
- 5.6 million — Gallons of water saved each year as a result of water conservation measures.
- 24/365/15 — Hours a day, days a year, number of years of guaranteed chilled and hot water, and standby electric power.
The challenge: Create a central utility plant to meet the hospital’s critical uptime needs as efficiently and affordably as possible
Phoenix Children’s Hospital – already one of the largest children’s healthcare facilities in the United States – has been expanding to meet the needs of a rapidly growing population. Such expansion necessitated a new central utility plant to keep the facility running reliably, because there simply can be no interruption in the delivery of medical care. Yet the plant also needed to be as energy-efficient as possible.
The solution: An innovative design incorporating the latest technologies to deliver more efficiency than a conventional plant
The hospital originally agreed to a conventionally designed plant that would run more efficiently than its existing decades-old plant, but that design would not deliver the savings and efficiencies that leading-edge technologies could. Johnson Controls had a long-standing working relationship with Phoenix Children’s Hospital, providing hospital facilities management and energy services. The company proposed an alternative design utilizing sophisticated automation systems, heat pumps, and advances in boiler and chiller technologies that would deliver more energy and operational savings. This design would cost more to build, but the savings would more than offset the cost. Johnson Controls guaranteed energy and operational cost reduction as well as the maintenance costs of the plant for 15 years under the terms of a proposed performance and maintenance agreement. After analysis by an independent consultant verified the projected energy costs and savings, the hospital accepted Johnson Controls’ proposal.
Because the hospital had previously approved the conventional design, the general contractor and architect had already begun construction planning. That process was well underway when the hospital changed direction by approving the Johnson Controls design. The project still had to be completed by the original deadline, however, so Johnson Controls worked with the construction team on an ongoing basis to make sure the project remained on schedule. It did. The new plant is up and running, and incorporates several advanced energy efficiency and water conservation technologies, including:
- variable speed drive chillers.
- high-efficiency condensing boilers.
- water-to-water heat pumps.
- sophisticated automation controls for mechanical and electrical systems.
Results and benefits
The new plant has created a more energy-efficient hospital that will save $5.2 million compared to the conventional design, based on net present value. Over the next 15 years, the new plant is projected to save the hospital $570,000 in energy costs a year and 5.6 million gallons of water a year. Consequently, even though the enhanced design cost $3 million more to build, that cost will be paid back in just five years. The energy-efficient design also helped the hospital qualify for $3 million in grants and rebates to help fund the project. The new plant provides all the electricity, heating, cooling, and hot water for the expanded hospital facility and will continue to do so reliably. Johnson Controls has taken full responsibility for maintaining the plant and guaranteed availability of chilled and hot water, and standby electric power for the life of the contract. Moreover, because the new plant uses less energy, water, and natural gas, the impact on the environment is minimized, helping the hospital meet its sustainability goals.