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Mansfield Dam

  • Project Location: Austin, TX
  • Owner/Client: Lower Colorado River Authority
  • Project Description:

With unique characteristics and COVID-19 causing delays, the Mansfield Dam project became a task that required skill, creativity, and persistence. The Mansfield Dam is a hydroelectric dam built to tame the waters of the Colorado River, protecting Austin from flooding. It is the tallest dam in Texas, topping out at 750 feet MSL. The Mansfield Dam is 278 feet high, 7,089.39 feet long, contains 25 floodgates that weigh 50,000 pounds each, and has more than 3 miles of tunnels within it.

LCRA (Lower Colorado River Authority) began a $10.5 Million project to rejuvenate the massive flood gates. Massive cranes were used to place the gates then the dam was built around it. Now, each gate was to be carefully removed for the first time since their installation with mere inches to spare.

Within the dam there are over 3 miles of tunnels, most being service tunnels that lead to the various mechanisms to operate the flood gates. These tunnels have tracks embedded in the floor to allow machinery to move the heavy pieces of the gates and equipment around for maintenance.

HTS and DXS worked with LCRA to select Daikin equipment to install inside the tunnels for dehumidification of the tunnel system. There was very little room to work and over 8 feet of solid concrete had to be cored to run the refrigerant lines and communication wires to the Daikin VRV condensers.

A Daikin Vision air handling unit and VRV cooling and reheating units were selected and modified by ModWerks. Once the unit was ready, a special skate was designed and built to move the unit and fit it into a tight space inside of one of the tunnels. Once it was in place, DXS constructed a plan to get inside of it and complete the EK wiring.

HTS Controls will monitor the equipment with a Distech controls system and a custom building automation program. We are expected to commission this project sometime in mid-November. This was a cumulative effort from almost every unit at HTS in Central Texas.

Government Key Considerations

Police stations, county court buildings, city halls, fire stations and libraries – these are just some of the structures city, county and federal governments build, operate and maintain.  And more often than not, local municipalities expect these buildings to last for decades, if not a century or more.  Faced with retrofitting these aging buildings, engineers and architects working on local government projects today are increasingly turning to VRF air conditioning systems.

DXS provides engineers and architects with VRF designs that cater to the tight confines of older buildings while also meeting new energy efficiency and ventilation standards.  On top of that, VRF systems make it possible to give tighter temperature control over multiple small zones.  Making dozens of office workers happy at the same time with the same system – now that’s a maintenance manager’s dream.

Key Considerations

  • Small mechanical footprint makes VRF systems ideal for retrofit projects
  • High energy-efficiency meets more stringent energy conservation guidelines
  • Opportunity to reduce overall building construction cost
  • Individual temperature control of smaller zones accommodates the needs of multiple users
  • Robust training program provided for maintenance managers and personnel
  • Experienced staff and products that have the ability to interface with a wide variety of control systems
  • DXS onsite at five key junctures:  onsite training prior to installation, quality control checks during installation, during start-up, 30 days after commissioning for building owner verification, and ongoing training for staff
  • Fast, dependable service and maintenance support provided after installation
  • Complete inventory of parts and equipment