Chiller Plant Phase II
A major multiyear project that began in July 2019 delivers critical upgrades to Virginia Tech’s chilled water infrastructure.
The chilled water system is a vital component of campus infrastructure. Currently, two on-campus chiller plants distribute chilled water through an underground piping network to cool buildings across the Blacksburg campus.
Under the renovations, three state-of-the-art 3,000-ton chillers were installed in both chiller plants, including two in the North Chiller Plant located on Stanger Street adjacent to the university’s Power Plant, and one in the Southwest Chiller Plant located in the Duckpond Drive Parking Lot (known as the Cage). The new equipment was designed to meet all Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) refrigerant requirements for environmental responsibility.
In addition, roughly four miles of new underground piping was installed across campus. The extensive piping network connects the North and Southwest Chiller Plants, along with buildings with stand-alone chiller systems, into one continuous chilled water loop.
The new chillers and expanded chiller network not only improve chilled water capacity and distribution across campus, but also deliver enhanced operational and energy efficiency and cost savings for the university.
Furthermore, the upgrades enable the university to have greater control over chilling operations and maintenance, leading to improved service delivery and less downtime for repairs.
The upgraded equipment and centralized network help expand operating capacity to support enrollment growth as well as construction and renovation priorities highlighted in the Campus Master Plan, Beyond Boundaries 2047: The Campus Plan and Strategic Plan, The Virginia Tech Difference: Advancing Beyond Boundaries.