Weeksville Heritage Center Geothermal Center
The Weeksville New Education Building site in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York, is home to a cluster of original, civil war-era domestic structures: the historic Hunterfly Road Houses dating from 1840–1880s—that represent a historical landmark for the African American community of Weeksville. The new building houses a new venue for Weeksville’s educational events. We provided an in-depth analysis of the possible alternatives to a geothermal system, allowing the client to make an informed decision for their historic facility.
For the New York City Department of Design and Construction, PWGC designed a closed loop geothermal system for the building, constructed in 2013, that is supplying the full heating and cooling needs of the building without affecting the historic facade or interfering with restoration efforts. The project has earned LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council and a Platinum Engineering Excellence Award to PWGC by the American Council of Engineering Companies.
PWGC was responsible for implementing a test closed loop and thermal conductivity testing, design of the borefield, supply and return piping and headers, and the buried manifold vault located outside adjacent to the mechanical room. PWGC provided construction administration and full-time inspection services during construction, including witnessing start up testing procedures and performance tests.
The closed loop borefield consists of 48 loops each drilled to a depth of 470 feet. Given the building’s cooling-dominant load profile (peak cooling load of 90 tons), PWGC designed in the ability to tie in a dry cooler in the future to supplement the geothermal system, if needed, during peak cooling periods.
We coordinated closely with the architect and mechanical engineer for critical integration of the loop field with the building-side of the system, including the need for a hybrid system. This loop field had to be carefully designed and located on this small urban site to avoid conflicts with other site features such as the bioswale, stormwater mains and drywells, and the soil drainage system.