Smith, Vice Chancellor, Administration and Finance
Subject: Hurricane Katrina Recovery – Update #27
Posted: October 17, 2006
The final repairs to the Dental
School Clinic and Administration buildings and the
Power Plant continue to progress, but somewhat more
slowly as the majority of the contract work has been
completed. There remain a few additional tasks that
need to be completed, and change orders are being
issued for these repairs as costs are gathered and
the work is approved.
The recent discovery of
additional mold growth in parts of the Clinic and
Administration building pose some new challenges.
Probably due to the continued humidity and varying
temperatures within the buildings, the design team
met with the Office of Facility Planning & Control
and LSUHSC to plot out the course for addressing
this challenge. Some additional temporary repairs
to the temporary chiller systems that are not yet
operating, reducing or eliminating sources of
outside air and the use of a number of portable
dehumidifying units are part of the approach that
has been developed. A sub-contractor will also go
through both buildings to inspect, test, and repair
(as necessary) all of the air handling units to
insure that they are operating properly. Additional
environmental remediation will also be required in
the effected spaces and the specifications for that
work are already being developed by the
environmental consultant. Once the temporary
chillers, air handlers, blowers, etc. are operating
properly we hope that the mold growth will be
arrested, the conditions of the interior of the
buildings will be stabilized and the final cleanup
At 1542 Tulane Ave., there are
also a series of change orders contemplated. Costs
have been developed by the contractor and they are
being assessed by the design team, FEMA, Facility
Planning and LSUHSC before they are released. Some
work has been approved, but the past two weeks were
largely consumed by testing for, locating and fixing
natural gas leaks in the basement. Now that the
leaks have been found and repaired, the energizing
of the building and testing of repaired electrical
equipment can continue.
Regardless of the progress in
completing temporary repairs at the Dental School
and at 1542 Tulane, the institution faces another
significant challenge as we contemplate re-opening
the upper floor spaces in any of these buildings. A
significant number of Facilities support staff are
required to operate and maintain these large
buildings once people and operations begin to move
back in. People in the trades (plumbers,
electricians, etc.) and custodian staff are
particularly difficult to recruit and retain in the
current job environment in and around the city.
People have not returned to the city as rapidly as
many had hoped and the competition for these skill
sets is high.
Here are highlights of work
that has been accomplished since our last update was
posted two weeks ago.
Temporary Repairs to the
Central Utility Plant on the Downtown Campus: Work
on the project continued throughout the last two
- The VFD and the new
filters in the Central Utility Plant are now
connected and operating.
- The rebuilt motor has
been installed and aligned.
- All of the electrical
connections between the pump motor, the VFD,
and the controls have been completed.
- On Friday, October 6th,
the rebuilt pump motor and VFD were started
- The power and
motor rotation were checked and verified
at startup. The rotation of the motor
was correct and the mechanical
subcontractors returned to make final
adjustments to the alignment of the
- The new VFD and
rebuilt motor were allowed to run
through the weekend and all of the
following week to test the repairs and
insure that they are operating properly.
- On Friday, October 13th,
the refurbished motor and VFD were still
running and no problems have occurred during
the test period. This allowed Entergy to
shut down the second motor and VFD so that
the delayed maintenance could begin.
- The contractor
began disconnecting the VFD and is
preparing to incorporate the new filter.
Student Parking Lot Lighting
Project: The contractor has begun working on the
project to make improvements to the lighting in the
Student Parking Lots on the downtown campus.
- The contractor determined
the location and layout for all of the new light
poles in Student Lots #2 and #3.
- Timber piles were driven
at the location of each new light pole on both
the #2 and #3 lots. These will support the
footings for the new light poles. By October 13th,
all of the piles had been driven.
- Trenches 18” wide and 30”
deep will be dug for the underground conduit and
electrical wiring for each light pole in the
- The trenching for Lot
# 3 has been completed and the conduit
installed. The trench has been backfilled
and the task of pulling the electrical
wiring through the conduit has begun.
- The trenching for Lot
#2 has also been completed. Conduit is
being installed and the trench is being
backfilled as the installation is
- As the electrical
wiring is pulled, the contractor is
preparing to make the electrical connections
to the control boxes.
- The new metal light poles
have been ordered and should be delivered within
the next 2-3 weeks.
- Both of the Student
Parking Lots (#2 & #3) have been and will be
closed periodically during the construction to
insure the safety of the students.
Temporary Repairs to 1542
Tulane Ave.: Work on this project has been delayed
for some time recently due to the presence of a
natural gas odor in the basement. Energizing the
building and testing of the repaired electrical
system was not allowed until the gas leak could be
confirmed and repairs made.
- Tests were initially
conducted in the basement of 1542 Tulane Ave.
using an electronic sensor/sniffer. They were
unable to detect any leaks using this method of
- The architects and
engineers developed an alternate method of
testing, a price for this work was solicited and
the contract was issued.
- The contractor pressure
tested all of the natural gas lines in the
basement. They located and repaired 4 separate
- With the completion of
this important work, we can return to the
process of energizing the building.
- Entergy has contacted
and has informed the contractor that they
will be on site Monday, October 16th
to energize the building.
- The contractor and our
consulting engineers will be on site to
support and observe the startup process.
Testing of the electrical repairs will
Temporary Repairs to the Dental
School Clinic and Administration Buildings:
- The repairs to the block
wall in the basement by the morgue and the
chemical storage room have been completed.
- The electrical contractor
at the Dental School completed the removal of
the 480V electrical service that was deactivated
- The contractor has
roughed-in the electrical devices that are
to be installed on the newly repaired block
walls in the basement spaces.
- Lighting fixtures and
devices are also being installed on the
- Light fixture switches
are being installed at the loading dock
- Light switches and
duplex receptacles are being installed in
the new switchgear room.
- The contractor
installed the identification tags and
circuit directories in the new electrical
- The mechanical contractor
has resumed the pipe labeling/identification of
the water lines in the basement of the Dental
School Administration Building.
- He has completed the
labeling of the miscellaneous branches of
water pipe and has begun labeling the drain
pipe, which is the last of the pipe that
must be labeled.
- The Phase 1 electrical
contractor is coordinating the removal of the
old chiller pump motors and condenser pump
motors in the Power Plant. The pump removal has
not yet been scheduled.
- The elevator contractor is
progressing with the repairs to the #3 elevator.
- The travel cables and
buffers have been replaced on Elevator #3
(in the Clinic Building). The governor
sheave and the governor cables have also
- He also has installed
the control panels for the #3 elevator. The
panel box had to be modified to accommodate
the additional switches & controls needed to
operate the elevator.
- He is wiring the
switches and controls to the contacts in
the panels, and the work is
approximately 60% complete.
- The contractor is also
installing new light fixtures in elevator
- The contractor is
removing the call buttons on the 1st floor
and in the basement of the Clinic Building.
- The contractor has
removed the basement elevator (exterior)
doors of elevator #3 so they can be
- The Dental School
architects hosted a pre-bid conference for the
Replacement/Repairs of the Fire Exit Doors &
Hardware of the Clinic & Administration
Buildings (the next phase of work required to
attaining building occupancy of the upper
floors). Bids for this work are due October 17,
- The elevator doors on the
elevator that leads to the walkway by Stanislaus
Hall have been replaced.
- The contractor making
repairs to the incinerator located at the Dental
School has discovered that the natural gas valve
that supplies the incinerator was damaged.
LSUHSC Facility Services staff have ordered a
replacement and will make the repair when the
new valve arrives.
- There will be an emergency
generator test on Tuesday, October 17th,
at 5:30 PM at the Resource Center. There will be
a flickering of lights, power, and elevator
service between 5:30 PM and 6:30 PM. This test
is necessary in order for LSU to accept the
- On Wednesday, October 18th
from 8:00 AM until noon, the fire alarm system
for the Walk to Wellness will have its annual
inspection. The contractor will be testing the
audible alarms, visual alarms and the elevator
recall for the two elevators along Gravier
Street. There will be no evacuation of the
walkway. We are notifying all to avoid any
panic or confusion.
Please continue to follow our
progress through our Daily Updates that are also
available on the web site.