STV: Mother Clara Hale Bus Depot | STV
“MCHBD has implemented a number of energy managing features to help them greatly reduce their carbon footprint and serve as an example for others. The integration of smarter controllers, rainwater collection, passive heating systems, and others work together to help manage the energy use of the building. Should be seen as a leader in large scale energy management initiatives.”
--Energy Manager Today Awards judge
To meet its goals of becoming more energy efficient, MTA New York City Transit (NYCT) worked with STV on an initiative to transform the site of a former trolley barn in the Harlem section of Manhattan into a modern, energy-efficient bus depot, the Mother Clara Hale Bus Depot (MCHBD). The bus maintenance and storage facility, which achieved Gold LEED certification, plays an important role in the NYCT’s ongoing initiative to move to hybrid-electric and ultra-low-emissions buses and now serves as a model for future facilities.
NYCT and the MCHBD Community Task Force jointly developed a vision for the new depot. Then STV employed weekly meetings with all design disciplines to coordinate the integration efforts. The design includes provision of a complete micro-electronic digital building energy management and automatic temperature control system and features low-emission boilers, heat-recovery air-handling units, natural lighting, rainwater recycling, solar wall air pre-heating and a green roof.
The design also included developing a complete energy model of the facility, using approved software to demonstrate successful achievement of the NYCT’s energy savings target design criteria and LEED Gold compliance criteria. This model allowed the team to modify equipment/ building features/design variables to immediately determine their impact on energy consumption.
The facility uses an array of energy-efficient and recovery features, including: Plate-type air-to-air heat recovery heat exchangers in the natural-gas-fired, variable-air-volume heating and ventilating units that continuously supply and exhaust 660,000 CFM of outdoor air ventilation to the facility; recovery of the air compressors’ rejected heat to provide space heating in utility room; total enthalpy recovery wheels in variable-air-volume multi-zone HVAC systems serving offices and locker rooms, providing year-round pre-conditioning of their outdoor intake air streams; fully condensing high-efficiency boilers; zone lighting controls and occupancy sensors; translucent façade wall panels, providing day-lighting enhancements; NOX gas monitoring controls system to reduce HV systems supply and exhaust fans’ speeds in response to variations in space NOX concentrations below a predetermined setpoint; south facing solar wall panels to pre-heat outdoor air for HVAC units during heating season.
“This could be easily replicated in many cities looking at modernizing transportation infrastructure,” said a judge. “Given the age of many buildings in cities tied to transportation, a great example of what can be done.”