CASE STUDY

Tower Lofts – North Park: Engineering Affordable Housing

PROJECT OVERVIEW

LOCATION:

San Diego, CA

CLIENT:

Casa Engineering

PROJECT TYPE:

Low-Income Housing and Senior Living – MEP Design

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

Pro Engineering Consulting took on the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineering design for the Tower Lofts project in North Park, San Diego. The development featured 99 micro units dedicated to low-income housing and senior living, located at 3430 30th Street, with a total living area exceeding 31,000 square feet.

KEY FEATURES

Diverse Unit Types:

  • Each unit included a sleeping/living area, kitchenette with sink, stove, and under-counter refrigerator, and a restroom. Several units were designed to be ADA compliant.

Energy-Efficient Hot Water Supply:

  • A set of tankless water heaters, located in the ground-floor mechanical room, aimed to provide one gas tankless water heater for every 5 or 10 units. Submeters were strategically placed to monitor individual hot water usage.

Roof-Mounted HVAC Systems:

  • All units were equipped with split cold and hot air systems, with condensers located on the roof. Refrigerant coils extended from the roof down to each unit through partition walls, facilitating efficient heating and cooling.

Mechanical Air Ventilation:

  • Mechanical air ventilation systems were installed in the entry walkway ceilings, promoting high-speed air extraction. Tenants were encouraged to open windows for fresh air intake, creating a balanced ventilation system.

CHALLENGES FACED

GAS TANKLESS WATER HEATER PLACEMENT:

Challenge: Determining optimal placement for gas tankless water heaters to achieve efficient hot water supply for each unit while considering space constraints in the mechanical room.

Solution: Pro Engineering Consulting conducted a thorough spatial analysis, ensuring that gas tankless water heaters were strategically placed to meet demand and accommodate monitoring submeters.

ROOF-MOUNTED HVAC INTEGRATION:

Challenge: Coordinating the installation and integration of roof-mounted HVAC systems to ensure seamless functionality and minimal disruption to the living spaces below.

Solution: Our team collaborated closely with architects and builders to design and implement a rooftop HVAC system that efficiently delivered heating and cooling to each unit.

BALANCING MECHANICAL AIR VENTILATION:

Challenge: Balancing the mechanical air ventilation system to achieve optimal air exchange while considering tenant behavior and the need to open windows for fresh air intake.

Solution: Pro Engineering Consulting implemented a well-calibrated mechanical air ventilation system, aligning with the architect’s specifications and encouraging tenants to maintain proper air circulation.

CONCLUSION

Pro Engineering Consulting successfully navigated the challenges of the Tower Lofts project, contributing to the creation of a functional and energy-efficient living space for low-income and senior residents. Our commitment to precision, collaboration, and innovative solutions ensured the success of this affordable housing endeavor.

We appreciate the collaboration with Casa Engineering and take pride in playing a role in enhancing living conditions for the community.

Pro Engineering Consulting Pro Engineering Consulting
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