Government building design: Fire and life safety

When your client is the government, engineering design can be tricky, thanks to stepped-up regulations, budgetary concerns, and other considerations. Respondents discuss fire and life safety issues in government, state, municipal, federal, and military facilities.
By Consulting-Specifying Engineer April 24, 2015

Respondents: Ian Bost, PE, LEED AP Principal, Mechanical Engineer Baird, Hampton & Brown Inc. Fort Worth, Texas Robert Eichelman, PE, LEED AP Technical Director EYP Architecture & Engineering Albany, N.Y. Paul W. Johnson, PE, LEEP AP BD+C Vice President o

Respondents

  • Ian Bost, PE, LEED AP, Principal, Mechanical Engineer, Baird, Hampton & Brown Inc., Fort Worth, Texas
  • Robert Eichelman, PE, LEED AP, Technical Director, EYP Architecture & Engineering, Albany, N.Y.
  • Paul W. Johnson, PE, LEEP AP BD+C, Vice President of Mechanical Engineering, Wood Harbinger, Bellevue, Wash.
  • Katie McGimpsey, PE, LEED AP, Principal Affiliated Engineers Inc., Rockville, Md.
  • R. Scott Pegler, PE, LEED AP, Director of Mechanical Engineering, Setty, Fairfax, Va.

Figure 2: Affiliated Engineers worked on the second phase of the National Institutes of Health’s John Edward Porter Neuroscience Research Center. One feature of the Phase II addition is a central atrium with a 200,000 cfm smoke evacuation system. CourtesyCSE: What unique fire suppression systems have you specified or designed in government or military buildings?

Bost: We have specified waterless fire suppression systems (FM200, and similar) for special spaces (IT, archival storage).

CSE: How have the costs and complexity of fire protection systems changed in recent years?

Bost: The waterless system costs seem to be increasing. Standard sprinkler system costs seem to be stable.