Manhattan Family Court
Constructed in the early 1970s, the 12-story
Manhattan Family Court building at 60 Lafayette Street houses all of the
borough’s family court operations. Preparations for a complete
rehabilitation of the building’s mechanical and electrical systems drew
attention to a significant inefficiency: The building’s chiller plant
was located outside the building.
For close to three decades, the facility had
relied on chilled water from pipes running from an adjacent building
under Lafayette Street, and leakage was considerable.
The City of New York presented NYPA with a unique
challenge: to install a completely new chiller plant within a Family
Court building not designed for the system’s bulk, weight or vibrations.
Analysis confirmed that adaptation of existing upper-floor mechanical
room space would be cost prohibitive.
NYPA crews isolated space in the subbasement and
ultimately lowered the massive equipment through a cut in the floor of
the building’s parking lot, completing the work after hours for minimal
The efficient new $4 million air-conditioning
system will save the city nearly $140,000 a year. It features three
high-efficiency electric centrifugal chillers, new oversized rooftop
cooling towers to accommodate climate control requirements of planned
computer facilities and a more environmentally benign refrigerant.
NYPA undertook the work as part of its long-term
energy partnership agreement with the city, under which the Authority
provides financing and design, engineering and construction services for
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