New Searle Visitor Center

IMEG provided commissioning and energy modeling services, along with mechanical, electrical, and fire protection engineering design, for the new Lincoln Park Zoo visitor center in Chicago. The new two-building facility, connected by an aluminum canopy, houses restrooms, member services and lounge, informational kiosk, stroller rentals, and back-of-house offices.

An energy analysis of the Lincoln Park Zoo Visitors Center was conducted to predict the potential energy cost and consumption savings. An energy model based on the proposed design was created while a baseline model was created that complied with LEED v2009. Several energy efficiency measures specified in the design that yielded savings against the baseline include parallel fan powered VAV, condensing boilers, low lighting power density LEDs, and improved building envelope insulation. These measures helped the building achieve a cost savings value of 30% compared against the baseline model.

Commissioning agents were involved early in the project, from design through occupancy. IMEG worked closely with the design and construction team to resolve operational issues that arose during functional testing, which revealed that the AHU serving the building was set up as a single zone unit, not a variable volume unit as required. IMEG worked with the manufacturer during the commissioning process to resolve this issue and other setup problems with the packaged controller.

Main systems commissioned include:

  • Hot Water System (Boiler, Pumps)
  • Air Handling Unit
  • A/C Split System
  • Makeup Air Handling Unit
  • Exhaust Fans
  • Ceiling Fan
  • Terminal Air Box
  • Fan Powered Box
  • Building Automation System
  • Interior & Exterior Lighting Controls
Lincoln Park Zoo - Visitors Center
Chicago, IL
8,300-sf New
Services Provided

Commissioning, Energy Modeling, Mechanical, Electrical