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"Big" Move for USF
3/1/2006
by Lochinvar Marketing

The University of South Florida (USF) has made the move to the Big East Conference. To help the USF Bulls prepare for competition in their new conference, the University built a brand new athletics center. The $18-million facility represents a significant portion of the $100 million invested in physical improvements to the school's main campus in Tampa since 1996.
        With more than 41,000 students, USF is the second largest university in the Southeast and one of the top 20 largest in the nation.  Six hundred student athletes use the new intercollegiate athletics center, which first opened its doors in May of 2004.  The 105,000-square-foot facility is entirely new construction.  Previously, the bulk of the athletics department's equipment and training rooms were housed in trailers and in the basement of the USF Sun Dome.

        "We were in need of a major upgrade before we joined the Big East," says Ray Gonzalez, project manager for the Department of Facilities Management and Construction at USF.  "The new USF Intercollegiate Athletics Facility is state-of-the-art.  It provides our sports programs with a definite competitive edge over the competition."

        Design/Build contractor R.R. Simmons Construction, consulting engineers Brady & Anglin, and USF collaborated on the design-build project.  Two Copper-Fin II­® (CFN-1260PM) water heaters were chosen to provide hot water to all locker rooms, bathrooms, and washing facilities, as well as to the hydrotherapy area of the athletics center.  The design also employed a 5,000-gallon Lock-Temp® storage tank (THG5000).  Sports teams using the building include football, baseball, soccer, tennis, and track & field.

        When asked why Lochinvar's Copper-Fin II water heaters were selected for this venture, Bill Holster, project manager with R.R. Simmons Construction, sums it up in one word:  "Quality."

        "I've been using Lochinvar equipment for 20 years," says Holster.  "I've never had a problem with it.  This time was no exception.  The entire installation went smoothly, from delivery to completion."  he also notes that no warranty work has been necessary on the Lochinvar equipment.

        Holster points to USF's state-of-the-art hydrotherapy equipment as one reason the top-quality, high-efficiency water heaters from Lochinvar were a priority on this project.  According to Holster, USF succeeded in building a sports medicine and hydrotherapy facility "equal to or better than" most NFL facilities.

        Todd Wilson, project engineer with Brady & Anglin, has been using Lochinvar equipment for more than 15 years.  He notes that no service calls have come in from the University regarding the Copper-Fin II water heaters or the Lock-Temp storage tank.  "We haven't even had to come out and tweak the system," Wilson says.  "The installation was problem-free, and the customer service from our Lochinvar sales rep, Rich Grimes, was outstanding."

        The Lochinvar system runs a 160°F circulating loop throughout the building, with hot water pulled through a mixing valve into a secondary 110°F circulation loop for the showers.  The entire construction project was completed on time and under budget, thanks in part to the choice of Lochinvar equipment and its simple installation.

        The initial operating costs of the Lochinvar system brought smiles to the staff at USF.  Mike Wilcox, director of auxiliary operations, says that USF is "very satisfied" with the performance of the Lochinvar water heaters and storage tank.  "It's been great", Wilcox says.  "We were particularly impressed with the self-diagnostic features that keep all of the Lochinvar equipment running smoothly.  The entire system is very user-friendly.  And quiet!"

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