For the past 30-plus years, the building has admirably served as the Wing Lake Developmental Center, for students with special needs residing in 21 Oakland County public school districts.
The new 40,000 square-foot facility opened in 2008, serving about 100 students. Features of the new center include universal accessibility, increased therapy space, a media center with sensory teaching materials and group learning spaces for sensory development activities.
Building Controls and Automation
The building management system (BMS) is the hub for facility controls and automation. All systems are integrated through BMS: operational and emergency electrical, plumbing, HVAC and lighting.
A detailed third-party commissioning process was implemented to functionally test each piece of mechanical equipment for operation and compliance with design intent upon completion of construction.
The facility required a unique back feed system to maintain emergency power during power outages (refer to the section describing power and power systems for a detailed discussion).
While fire protection requirements dictate what design is required to protect the building users (in this case, NFPA 13), the project team took advantage of using extended coverage, quick response sprinkler heads.
High fresh air/exhaust requirements drove selection of the heat pump system, which also incorporated sustainability considerations and energy recovery. Prior to its distribution, ventilation and mixed air is filtered through 30 percent efficient pre-filters and 65 percent efficient cartridge filters. Return air for each individual heat pump passes through a 30 percent efficient filter prior to mixing with ventilation air.
The building’s lighting system followed ASHRAE 90.1-2001 guidelines, and is controlled through the BMS. Direct/indirect linear pendants are used in place of the more typical 2 by 4 prismatic fixtures. This greatly enhanced the environment of the room and gave the users the option of turning off all direct light, and relying on only the indirect lighting. Lighting meets ASHRAE guidelines of 1.5 watts per square foot, which also is the goal for LEED™. Occupancy sensors are found in all of the rooms, so lights turn off automatically when the room is not in use. Exterior and corridor lighting is also automated.
Plumbing for this facility is controlled through the BMS. Circulation pumps are used to maintain warm water temperatures at the fixtures and minimize the need to run water, conserving water use.