Imagine the size and scope of mechanical and electrical systems needed to serve a 700,000 sq. ft. sports and entertainment venue.
The T-Mobile Center in Kansas City, MO, is that venue, and a team of electricians from P1’s Building Technologies division was awarded the building automation upgrade, allowing all these systems to work and communicate seamlessly.
You’d never know it looking at the compact control panels, but these upgrades throughout the facility perform a very big job.
Some of the major equipment controlled by the panels include boilers, chillers, and large air handling units (AHUs), all of which are critical to the functionality and comfort of the Center.
Project Manager and Electrical Foreman Michael Green said P1 won the job through competitive bid.
“Johnson Controls was the existing controls contractor for the Center, and P1 was able to come up with a number that met their bid criteria,” Michael said. “We also partnered with Max Electric, which helped us secure the bid.”
Both Michael and project Foreman John Ciesiensky agree the biggest challenge has been working around the busy T-Mobile Center schedule.
“In an event center with so much going on, there’s no shutting down, and disruption has to be kept to a minimum, so we have adjusted our own hours and worked hard to ensure we get the work done around T-Mobile’s busy schedule,” Michael said.
“We’ve studied the event calendar carefully, and coordinated with the T-Mobile Facilities team to ensure the controllers and units we’re changing over are either non-critical for the upcoming events or back online in the new system prior to it,” John explained.
John also notes that upgrading someone else’s work presents its own challenges, which P1 was able to meet.
From a hands-on perspective in the field, there’s also the challenges that come with following up on someone else’s work,” John said. “We can’t always use the exact paths as the previous electricians, so we have to investigate and then quickly decide whether to follow in their footsteps or create our own new pathways through the space.”
Despite the obvious challenges, Michael says it’s been a really cool project to work on.
“Everyone knows the arena, and even though most people will never think about what goes into keeping an arena this size running, it’s rewarding to know our P1 team is playing a major role in the functionality of the building, supporting the performances and events that happen there,” Michael said.
“Seeing the behind-the-scenes areas of the arena and everything that goes into preparing for events is a unique VIP perspective most people will never get to experience,” John added.
“For me, the challenges are the fun part,” John said. “I enjoy solving problems and finding solutions, so any challenges are like real-life puzzles and logic problems. The results of solving them make it worthwhile!”
The team has approximately one-third of the controls upgrade project complete, with an estimated completion date of February 2024.
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P1 Group works with P1 Service, LLC to provide HVAC, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing service, performance solutions, and preventative maintenance. P1 Service, LLC has locations in Lenexa, KS, Wichita, KS, Topeka, KS, St. Joseph, MO, and Ankeny, IA.