PHL Philadelphia International Airport

Airports are vast, interconnected networks of structures, surfaces, and workspaces designed to facilitate the movement of passengers, aviation workers, aircraft, cargo, baggage, and surface vehicles. Airport facilities rely on a number of specialized building systems that operate as part of a larger system, and include everything from electrical, HVAC, security, and safety, to lighting, utilities, telecommunications, and energy management.

The PHL CDP includes funding for multiple building system upgrades designed to modernize the facility and create a world-class experience for everyone who accesses the airport on a daily basis. Two recently completed projects include upgrades to PHL’s centralized paging platform and HVAC system.

Terminal Announcement Control System Upgrade

The Terminal Announcement Control System (TACS) is a centralized communication system designed to ensure passengers and airport workers receive the right information at the right time and place. PHL Terminals A through F use the TACS system to communicate in real time with multiple networks. Prior to the project, PHL experienced complications with the operation of the existing analog microphone stations in the terminals via newly installed digital speakers. These malfunctions resulted in delays to and failures of live paging in the terminals.

The Work:

Modifications and upgrades to the TACS include installation of fiber in various telecom closets, as well as upgrades to:

  • Network switches in various telecom closets
  • Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) in various telecom closets
  • Paging stations throughout the airport holding rooms, and
  • Paging stations at security check points though the airport.
The Result:

These modifications and upgrades provide a fully integrated announcement system through a new centralized paging platform. The newly installed head-end equipment and digital paging stations have corrected the delays and failures of live paging in the terminals and ensure the TACS system is able to deliver exceptional performance and reliability.

The Capital Development Group Team: The Contractors:
Project Manager (PM): Kalpesh Trivedi Armour & Sons Electric
Resident Engineer (RE): Dennis McGovern

HVAC Renovation and Replacement Building Systems

Maintaining comfortable temperatures throughout the airport is important to the comfort of passengers and employees. Several concourses, including B, C, and D, as well as apron-level spaces, experienced temperature fluctuations (either too cold or too hot) due to aging HVAC equipment, including rooftop air handling units, hydronic pumps and heat exchangers, that were beyond their useful service life. The PHL maintenance team had trouble keeping spaces at a comfortable temperature due to inoperable controls.

The Work:

HVAC unit upgrades included the replacement of the utility tunnels, hot water and chilled water pumps, and the refurbishment and installation of hot and chilled water pipes. The Division of Aviation replaced approximately 60 rooftop air handling units, along with new controls, drives, and pumps on Concourses B, C, and D. In Concourse B alone, 32 air handlers were replaced.

Coordination and timing with airport tenant OTG and American Airlines were key to successfully completing this challenging project. As new OTG restaurants were nearing completion, HVAC was an important piece of needed infrastructure. In order to minimize disruption to American Airline flight operations, only one gate at a time was closed to allow for the construction. Work was performed simultaneously with a roof replacement project to minimize disruption to the terminals.

The Result:

The new HVAC systems and repairs have dramatically improved the temperature and airflow in all concourses, accommodating additional passenger and restaurant loads. The new equipment is connected to the building automation system allowing for better temperature control and ease of maintenance.

More planned HVAC upgrades are anticipated for three airport mechanical rooms with distribution enhancements designed for concourses A and B, and the F Ramp Tower.

B Concourse Project C-D Concourse Project
PHL Capital Development Group Team: PHL Capital Development Group Team:
Project Manager (PM): Imad Haq, Assistant Engineering Manager Project Manager (PM): Imad Haq, Assistant Engineering Manager
Resident Engineer (RE): David Salindong, Dosse Akpeko Resident Engineer (RE): Dosse Akpeko, David Salindong
Division of Aviation Co-ops: Maurice Mendez, Jake Gierula, Brian Holden, Dan Lemos, Eliel Ytterberg, Eric Nowosielski
The Contractors: The Contractors:
Mechanical Prime Contractor: Dolan Mechanical Mechanical Prime Contractor: Edward J Meloney
Electrical Prime Contractor: EJ Electric Electrical Prime Contractor: Wescott Electric Company
Sheet metal subcontractor: Marlyn Sheet Metal Sheet metal subcontractor: Precision Air
Insulation subcontractor: Brass Roots Insulation, Inc. Insulation subcontractor: Mid-Atlantic Construction
Paint subcontractor: Sioutis Coatings Enterprise Paint subcontractor: Sioutis Coatings Enterprise
Controls subcontractor: Siemens Controls subcontractor: CM3
Fire alarm subcontractor: Simplex Grinnell Fire alarm subcontractor: Simplex Grinnell