While the chiller plant had fared well
in the storm, the old LSU steam plant was
rendered inoperable for several weeks.
It had been built at grade with critical
equipment on the ground level, vulner-
able to flooding. After Katrina, Enwave
reinvested in the plant, replacing boilers and pumps to get it up and running
again. An opportunity to build a modern,
resilient new boiler plant soon presented
A key Enwave customer building,
Charity Hospital, never recovered from
the hurricane (and stands abandoned to
this day). Its owner, LSU Health, was moving ahead with plans to replace it with a
new $1.1 billion Level 1 trauma hospital: the University Medical Center New
Orleans. To serve this facility, Enwave
The reverse osmosis system and piping at Enwave New Orleans’ steam plant.
Courtesy Enwave Ne w Orleans.
The $1.1 billion University Medical Center New Orleans, a Level 1 trauma hospital and Enwave
customer, opened Aug. 1, 2015.
Courtesy Enwave New Orleans.
ENWAVE NEW ORLEANS
For nearly 20 years, Enwave New
Orleans has been providing thermal
energy to mission-critical hospitals and
health care facilities in the city’s BioDistrict medical corridor. The company’s first
customers were five medical complexes
supplied with chilled-water service from
Enwave’s district cooling plant and steam
from a plant the company leased from
Louisiana State University (LSU) Health.
Today Enwave serves customers not only
in the BioDistrict but also in the adjacent
central business district. The company is
a subsidiary of Brookfield Asset Management.
Enwave’s district cooling plant, housed
beneath a 600-car parking garage at the
corner of Gravier and Claiborne, is capable of providing up to 32,000 tons of
cooling capacity at full buildout, including 52,000 ton-hr of ice thermal storage.
It is currently connected to 31 customer
buildings representing 5. 6 million sq ft
of space. This system has been operating
with 99.99 percent reliability since it
began service in 2000.
About a quarter-mile away is Enwave
New Orleans’ new steam plant, opened in
2014. Its three 70,000-lb/hr natural gas-fired boilers produce steam for distribution
to 22 buildings totaling 4. 1 million sq ft for
space heating, domestic hot water, laundry and sterilization use. The company
constructed the $28 million facility to
replace the leased plant after Hurricane
When Katrina hit, Enwave’s chiller
plant survived the high winds, storm surge
and levee breaches intact. It had been
designed to withstand extreme storms
above the 500-year flood plan. The building and rooftop cooling towers had been
hardened, and 8 MW of backup generation was in place to keep the plant running for several days off the grid. That
turned out to be unnecessary, however, as
all 11 of Enwave’s customers at the time
– all in the BioDistrict – were under water
in the disastrous flooding that submerged
80 percent of the city.
KEY ENWAVE NEW ORLEANS
CUSTOMERS INCLUDE: · LSU Health Sciences Center · University Medical Center
New Orleans · Tulane University Health
Sciences Campus · City of New Orleans · Louisiana Cancer Research Center · Delgado Community College
School of Nursing · The Roosevelt, A Waldorf
Astoria Hotel · The Troubadour Hotel · The Orpheum Theater · The Pythian Apartments · St. Joseph’s Church