Fort Sam Houston Building 16 – Generator Upgrade

Location: Fort Sam Houston, TX
Owner: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Contract Value: $698,875.12
Completion Date: 01/2013
Category: Construction / Electrical

Capital Construction was contracted by USACE to install a 120/208V, 3-phase, 4 wire, backup generator and automatic transfer switch (ATS) and associated electrical distribution system in the FSH Historic District, Building 16. The new generator provides emergency to the UPS in Room 126, receptacles and lights which also includes critical communications systems and the HVAC system which cools the critical communication servers. Prior to the start of installation, Capital conducted an electrical engineering assessment survey that determined electrical load requirements and provided stamped engineering drawings for construction.

The original scope of work required for the generator and ATS to be located in a weatherproof enclosure adjacent to the mechanical yard enclosure near Building 16. Upon further consideration, USACE determined the generator should be located in a vault to remove the equipment from view and to more closely resemble other buildings in the historic district. USACE modified the contract to include design and installation of the generator in a vault.

Subsequently, Capital provided the vault and electrical design to USACE which was compliant with OSHA standards for confined space entry and designed to provide cooling to the generator in excessive heat conditions. Capital constructed the vault with a capillary fill sub-base, a one foot thick floor with a generator pad and one foot thick walls, connected to the concrete floor with a keyway. Water stops were also installed to prevent groundwater infiltration into the vault. Galvanized steel grating was installed over the vault with a man way access over the vault ladder. A small parapet was constructed at the top of the vault with select rock to match the surrounding historical buildings. The vault size was 15 feet wide, 28 feet long and 13 feet deep. The emergency generator housing was redesigned and constructed to provide maximum cooling to the engine and also wired to provide emergency power to the lighting system inside the vault. As a result 90% of the project was self performed by HJD Capital Electric, Inc.

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