Heating Decentralization & Utility Upgrades

County of Berks Leesport, PA



The Berks County North Campus central steam plant served four of the largest facilities at the site – the prison, nursing home, reentry center and annex building. In an effort to make more informed decisions regarding their central utilities and future needs, they had previously engaged Entech to complete a utility master plan and schematic design.

Following the preliminary study and design, the County opted to decentralize heating and Entech was selected to remove the Annex Building from the central heating plant as well as upgrade existing utilities within the Annex building.

Solution Details

Following recommendations from the planning phases, the County of Berks began the process to decentralize heating at their North Campus, beginning with the Annex Building. Although maintaining the current central heating facility was less expensive in the short-term, decentralization had more long-term benefits, including lower life-cycle costs and more flexibility regarding potential privatization and separation of campus facilities.

Entech provided engineering services from design through construction to install new heating equipment within the Annex building, separating it from the central heating plant. In addition, existing cooling and domestic hot water systems in the Annex building were replaced.

Upgrades included:

  • Installation of natural gas fired boilers
  • Replacement of two (2) new chillers, pumps, piping and components
  • Replacement of existing steam plate and frame domestic water heater with two (2) condensing hot water heaters and piping
  • Renovations to mechanical rooms
  • Control System Upgrades
  • Associated improvements to the HVAC system
  • Installation of new 4-pipe fan coil units and controls
  • Asbestos and lead paint testing in the construction areas of the building

All upgrades were scheduled in a manner that operations were not interrupted.

By removing the Annex building from the central heating plant and updating existing utilities in the facility, the Co

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