KCI, through our acquisition of Redding Linden Burr, provided mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineering for the Hemi Hideout, an event venue located outside of Houston, Texas. This 21,700-square-foot heavy timber frame building is reportedly “the largest of its type in Texas.” With a total project cost of $4 million, long-term energy savings was important. A center octagonal copula tops the structure at 53 feet above ground, while the adjacent pond harbors the geothermal equipment necessary to heat/cool the facility.
A vertical closed loop bore field was initially investigated because of the thermal conductivity of the earth and the amount of land readily available. After considering all needs of the project, specifically the rural location affecting the urgency of on-site fire protection, the pond loop was confirmed as the application preferred over the other possible loop field designs. This resulted in the construction of a 4.5-acre pond, larger than necessary but made more substantial in order to achieve depth into which a 85-ton Slim Jim plate heat exchanger was immersed. The 840 square feet of stainless steel dimple plate transfers heat via four-inch pipes that travel only 800 feet to the facility. Circling the structure before branching off, two-inch lines then penetrate the building into each of the seven small mechanical rooms. The design uses displacement ventilation to minimize the interior ducting, a key request from the owner. Once inside the mechanical rooms, the 11 separate geothermal units, all two-stage with reheat, and the two energy recovery ventilators (ERV) for outside air treatment operate to cool the space housing a collection of 24 historic cars, antique tractors and motorcycles, over 600 porcelain and neon signs, and the many guests that visit this out of the ordinary facility.