Providence Tarzana Medical Center Chillers

We installed two new chillers and a control system to help a hospital achieve energy savings and seismic regulatory compliance.

View of the entrance of Providence Tarzana Medical Center

Value Delivered

For this project, EMCOR Services Mesa Energy provided energy-efficient chillers and a building automation system that would help optimize chiller plant operations despite two critical challenges.

The first challenge was that many manufacturers hadn’t had time to satisfy new California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) seismic regulations. Second, the room into which the new chillers had to be installed was too narrow, and the ceiling was too low, for most equipment on the market.

Our experts worked with various manufacturers to develop equipment that was not only the right size, but also provided the best long-term solution. We had the units tested and their performance documented to meet OSHPD standards, completing the whole process in only six months.

Because of our single-source design-build expertise, we also handled piping and other activities required to install the system components in a limited space. This helped to eliminate markup costs, streamline construction implementation, and enable fast-track project completion.

In minimal downtime, we provided environmentally-responsible equipment demolition and refrigerant disposal; and installed equipment in compliance with seismic regulations.

We were also able to design a control system that coordinates pumps, chillers, and other devices for maximum energy efficiency.

Our expert rigging management helped ensure optimal patient and street level safety, and our solution helps improve patient comfort while offering immediate energy savings.

Client Objectives 

The client needed to upgrade building systems with more energy-efficient chillers, comply with new seismic regulations, and maximize its chiller plant capabilities through automated control.


To help keep downtime in this hospital setting to an absolute minimum, we installed a temporary 200-ton air-cooled chiller.

We then isolated two of the previous chillers, and removed and discarded their refrigerant before disconnecting and removing them along with their chilled water pumps, associated piping, and concrete pads.

To prepare for the chiller installation, we:

  • Installed piping, pumps, and a refrigerant relief system
  • Pressurized the system
  • Performed hydrostatic flushing
  • Tagged all new piping
  • Removed and replaced parts of the chilled water supply and return lines
  • Installed butterfly valves for future connection

We then installed two new chillers. Each included energy-efficient, frictionless, central-processor-controlled compressors, as well as new pumps. We also:

  • Re-piped the chiller plant
  • Insulated the chiller water piping
  • Installed new variable frequency drives (VFDs) on the chilled water pumps
  •  Included lead/lag staging to help improve performance by enabling chillers, compressors, pumps, VFDs, and cooling towers to adjust to varying environmental conditions
  • Oversaw all crane, rigging, and permitting activities throughout demolition and installation
  • Designed a control system that coordinates pumps, chillers, and other devices to enable an all-variable-flow central plant with system components regulated for maximum energy efficiency
  • Installed the new building control system to automate and optimize the central plant including both new chillers and the remaining backup
  • Provided the client with the manufacturer’s chiller performance data, system training, and all equipment documentation
  • Tested and balanced the chillers’ water system
  • Performed commissioning and startup​​​​​​​ 

Client Background

Providence Tarzana Medical Center is a 245-bed, not-for-profit medical center serving the San Fernando Valley.