Salas O’Brien believes in supporting local communities through good design, and that’s why we’ve helped design many fire stations across North America, ensuring that these local heroes have safe, energy-efficient buildings that pay special attention to critical design elements such as generators, breathing air compressor systems, spaces for practice drills, exhaust and fume detection systems, and, of course, bays for the fire trucks and ambulances.

Beaumont Fire Station

An industrial area home to major oil brands such as Texaco and Chevron,
Beaumont, Texas, understandably contains twelve fire stations in the approximately 90-square-mile city area. When the Beaumont Fire-Rescue Services replaced one of its stations with a brand new building, Salas O’Brien designed the HVAC system and provided the electrical and plumbing engineering.

The HVAC portion of this project design included two 32-ton air-cooled chillers (with integral chilled water pumps), single-zone, constant-volume air-handling units, and variable-volume air-handling units with terminal boxes. The electrical service included 277/480V, 800 amps served from pole-mounted utility company transformers. Our team’s design featured all-LED lighting and used natural gas to support a 425-kW emergency generator. For the plumbing portion of this project, our team designed water, storm, sanitary, vent, and fire suppression systems.

Gainesville Fire Station

Gainesville, Florida, is the largest city in the region of North Central Florida. The city needed a new fire station to supplement its main downtown location and to serve as the Gainesville Fire Rescue administrative headquarters.

Bentley Architects + Engineers asked Salas O’ Brien to provide MEP, fire protection, and low voltage systems design, as well as LEED support for this 24,000-square-foot project.

This project included several critical design elements. The fire station’s electrical systems are backed up by a 300-kW natural gas generator, and the bays are heated with natural gas radiant heaters, including air scrubbers for exhaust. Our work on these key elements and others helped earned the fire station LEED Silver status.

Pacific Highlands Ranch Fire Station

Pacific Highlands Ranch is a primarily residential community located in San Diego, California, one of the ten largest cities in the country. The city asked Salas O’Brien to manage the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing design and LEED administration of its new fire station.

Some unique features of our design included a covered fuel tank area (with 1,000-gallon fuel tank), a 26-kW standby diesel generator, and a tail-pipe vehicle exhaust removal system to support the station’s three drive-through apparatus bays.

We also designed a Halon-based, refrigerant-free HVAC system to reduce ozone depletion; individual controls of operable windows, lighting, ceiling fans, and thermostats; and a high-efficiency lighting design. This 10,500-square-foot facility earned LEED Silver certification, and its overall energy performance is 35% better than current CA Title 24 requirements.