Automated Control Systems, Inc. recently completed a $2.7 million BAS integration as part of the renovation and expansion of Monroe Hall on the campus of Loyola University in New Orleans.

Automated Control Systems in Metairie, LA, specializes in the design and installation of environmental control systems for buildings in the Southeast Louisiana and Southern Mississippi region. The company is also a member of the InsideIQ Building Automation Alliance, an international alliance of independent building automation contractors.

Monroe Hall is a significant building on the Loyola University campus, housing several of the school’s colleges and hosting classes for a majority of the university’s undergraduates. As part of a complete renovation and expansion, two floors were added to the existing five-story building. The seventh floor was added to house the major mechanical systems, including new heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment. The sixth floor was added to house some additional mechanical systems as well as new classrooms, offices, and research areas. A new Schneider Electric I/A series BAS replaced existing pneumatic and older direct digital controls in the building. In addition to the HVAC equipment, the BAS also integrates with Phoenix Fume Hood Controls, MK Plastics exhaust fans, and VFDs from ABB.

“Because of all the classrooms and faculty offices in Monroe Hall, shutting the building down wasn’t feasible during the three-year long project, so staging the work was a critical challenge,” said Wayne Durr, vice president of Automated Control Systems. “While as many intrusive and noisy activities as possible were scheduled during breaks, most of the work had to be completed in an occupied building while minimizing disruptions. With the mechanical equipment located on the newly added sixth and seventh floors, the new BAS was introduced one floor at a time from the top down.”

The systems integration includes a variety of specialized applications to accommodate several chemistry and biology labs housed in Monroe Hall. There are approximately 230 Phoenix supply valves, exhaust valves, downdraft tables, snorkels, and chemical storage cabinets in addition to the 270 DDC VAV terminals. The BAS monitors the building pressure and controls the amount of outside air being introduced to replace the air that is being removed by the miscellaneous fume hoods in the labs and related exhaust fans located on the roof. To maintain constant climate control for animals kept in the building for use in lab experiments, the BAS is connected to a dedicated back-up generator to run the AHU and VAV boxes for those rooms. In addition, the BAS monitors air quality conditions in a greenhouse located on the roof.

The BAS also integrates with the fire alarm command center in Monroe Hall. The integration includes a panel that allows the fire department to monitor and control AHU fans, stairwell pressurization fans, and fire/smoke dampers for specific areas or individual floors in case of fire or smoke in the building. This panel can also be used for a post-fire smoke evacuation mode.

“From commercial offices to hospitals to critical university facilities, InsideIQ member firms provide system integration in a variety of buildings,” said Paul Strohm, president of the InsideIQ Building Automation Alliance. “By sharing best practices and participating in training events, InsideIQ firms like Automated Control Systems acquire knowledge of the latest technology and techniques, enabling them to successfully tackle any integration challenge.”

Automated Control Systems completed the BAS installation at Monroe Hall on time and on budget and continues to provide ongoing service campus-wide for Loyola University. The expanded and renovated Monroe Hall maintains its role as an important center of campus activity while operating more effectively with the new BAS that integrates with the varied equipment in the building. ES