University of Toledo granted $2 million for water renovations

Haley Boehm / IC

Haley Boehm / IC

Benjamin Morse, Staff Reporter

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The state of Ohio granted the University of Toledo over $2 million to implement campus water renovations.

According to a press release from the state, the university plans to contract with Toledo-based Trane U.S. Inc. and Peak Electric Inc., among others, to add cooling towers and a new chiller in two water plants on the main campus.

As stated by SPX Cooling Technologies, a cooling tower is a specialized heat exchanger in which air and water are brought into direct contact with each other to reduce the water’s temperature.

“Facilities managers at UT requested chiller water plant upgrades,” Michael Sheehy, a state representative, wrote in an email. “Two chillers on campus, one at north end and one at south end, will provide air conditioning/climate control, not just for personal comfort but for sensitive IT, rare books, etc.

Sheehy described the process of this specific financing.

“Before these funds are released at the state level, funds must get the authorization from the State Controlling Board. My representative on the board voted to release the funds which had previously been voted on in the General Assembly,” Sheehy wrote.

Associate Vice President for Facilities and Construction Jason Toth said he predicts substantial improvements.

“The project will add capacity to the system, allowing us to better meet the needs of our users while also providing more efficient and less costly equipment,” said Toth.

In accordance with a Filtration Systems Technology website, using cooling tower filtration decreases maintenance costs by ensuring that the system is operating at maximum capacity and increases efficiency by recirculating water and removing particles such as suspended solids.

Students at UT recognize that the improved water renovations and boosted efficiency will aid in providing a comfortable working environment.

“It’s not every day you think about water renovations on campus,” said Kennedy Shaw, a first-year biology major. “But what they are doing here really does matter. When it comes to improving indoor climate conditions, I know for me, I need a comfortable temperature in order to focus on my work.”

Representative Sheehy, a UT graduate, said he holds value in advancements made with  his alma mater.
“Any time an improvement is made at the University of Toledo, whether an academic milestone, physical plant improvement or a Rocket sports victory, I take personal pride in that achievement,” Sheehy wrote,  “This funding and improvement will serve students today and in the years beyond.”

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University of Toledo granted $2 million for water renovations