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Johnny Manziel and HVAC

May 9, 2014
Now that Johnny Manziel has been drafted by the Cleveland Browns, you can be sure the team will provide him with a comfortably cooled and heated facility. HVAC is the "Twelfth Man" in sports facilities.

Johnny Manziel was sweating bullets as he watched and waited for his name to be called during Round 1 of the 2014 NFL Draft. Dude was sucking down water like nobody's business. Manziel was clearly nervous, as one player after another was taken before him. Could it be he feared becoming "Brady Quinn 2.0," a clone of that other highly-touted college player who had to wait and wait and wait to be drafted (by the Browns!)? Let's hope his pro career pans out better than Quinn's.

So, you can understand the importance of adequate cooling in these kinds of situations. And, after he arrives at the Browns training facility in Berea, OH, and at Browns stadium, Manziel will certainly have the best indoor workout facilities sin tax money can buy.

What makes a sports facility game-day ready in the HVAC category? Here's a look at some guidelines by experts, and state-of-the-art innovations being employed at sports facilities across the U.S.

A recent survey by Scott Arnold, executive editor of HPAC Engineering, reveals that in the college ranks, teams are adopting increasing types of green and sustainable practices in the operation of their facilities.

Indoor swimming pools — officially known as natatoriums — present what are probably the greatest  dehumidification challenges. In this article, Dive Into Indoor Pool Dehumidification, James Hogan describes the importance of having a building envelope and air distribution system that work together to keep moisture down.

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District website contains an informative guide to stadium construction from an HVAC point of view, for a variety of structures, open-air and enclosed. For all facilities, air-handling is the primary consideration. For ice rinks, it notes the energy drain caused by refrigeration. The amount of ice that's produced has a bearing on the size of the refrigeration system.

Cambridge Engineering, a manufacturer of industrial heating units based in Chesterfield, MO, here provides a description of how it outfitted an 80,000 sq. ft. indoor, multi-use sports facility.

Another indoor soccer facility in Pontiac, MI, needed adquate heating for 267,000 sq. ft. Here's how they did it, in an article from Metal Construction News.

What about noise level? It matters big time, especially in cavernous ice rinks. Read what HGC Engineering, Mississauga, Ontario did to manage noise reverberation at the Sixteen Mile Sports Complex in Oakville, Ontario.

So many public sports facilities have needs for multi-use, including aerobics, swimming, and in this facility, a dance studio. It's the East Oakland Sports Complex, a 22,000 sq. ft. facility for all that and more. A leading West Coast commercial contractor — Broadway Mechanical Contractors (BMC) — provided complete installations of the sanitary waste and vent, storm, domestic cold water, high pressure cold water, and hot water supply and return plumbing systems.

Wenger Corporation, Owatonna, MN, has produced this excellent overview of Planning Your Athletic Facility. See pages 25-27 for a brief but helpful look at important HVAC considerations.

We can be thankful for these and other leaders, who are bringing innovations to athletic factility construction. How ironic would it be if these facilities — that the public and professional athletes both trust as healthy environments — were to become neglected or so poorly designed as to be a detriment to health!