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Inova Schar Cancer Institute, Building B Tower 2

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Inova Schar Cancer Institute, Building B Tower 2
3225 Gallows Road
Fairfax, VA

General Contractor:  Clark Construction
Engineer/Architect:  Leach, Wallace Associates, Inc.
Architect:  Wilmot/Sanz, Inc.
Contract Amount:  $15,000,000
Start Date:  11/28/2016
Completion Date:  4/20/2018


According to an article in the November 7, 2017 edition of the Fairfax County Times, “The 117 acres of land off of Gallows Road in Merrifield once occupied by Exxon Mobil has gone quiet since the energy giant vacated its premises in 2012, but if everything goes according to plan, the campus will soon become a hub of scientific and technological innovation that will make Fairfax County a destination for the global medical community.”

The first phase of development on the former Exxon Mobil campus was the new Inova Schar Cancer Institute (ISCI), which is part of the Inova Center for Personalized Health. The project involved creative renovation of Building B, Tower 2 – one of the existing eight-story former office towers with an adjacent addition to house the new Proton Therapy center.

When Shapiro & Duncan was awarded the project, the existing building had been completely gutted and was ready for mechanical work to start. Our scope of work included mechanical systems and equipment on three levels of garage area plus nine levels of above grade space.

Our first challenge was completing the field coordination of the first three levels. While our Virtual Design and Coordination (VDC) team was getting started producing 3D coordination drawings, the field team went ahead and laid out pipe and duct work with the other trades on site and started the installation process. This is the way mechanical design and construction used to be coordinated in the pre-Building Information Modeling (BIM) days.

By the time construction was in place on the first three levels, the remaining floors were coordinated using our customary BIM process.

During the course of construction, another challenge faced by our field team was the constant design change required to accommodate existing conditions. Any time you are dealing with an existing building being renovated with new equipment, components may not work in the field as intended and have to be modified. This was definitely the case with Building B, Tower 2.

A third challenge we dealt with was coordination of radiant heating pipe underneath the drive aisle,to melt snow and ice.


The mechanical system, in addition to the outdoor radiant heating system described above, include two dedicated outside air system (DOAS) units placed on the first floor and serving floors 1-9. Each floor has approximately 50 DOAS variable air volume (VAV) boxes with heating and chilled water coils. We installed a four-pipe distribution system (two chilled water plus two heating water) to these boxes. On the 8th and 9th floors there is a pharmacy area that also uses a roof-top unit and specialty exhaust fans. Each floor also has data closets equipped with three fan coil units that use a gycol chilled water loop.

Trades included: sheet metal, insulation, automatic temperature controls, air and water balancing, duct cleaning, fire stopping, rigging, heat-trace/radiant heat, concrete scanning, core drilling, medical gas installation and water chemical treatment.

With all of the design revisions encountred a tremendous amount of coordination was required between our VDC team and our field team. On the project management side, our people went above and beyond to ensure that all mechanical systems and equipment were installed correctly.

The ISCI project, Shapiro & Duncan’s third completed project for the Inova Health System, is a further demonstration of our expertise in the healthcare/hospital segment of the mechanical systems market space. With three more Inova Health System projects in progress, two in Fairfax County and one in Loudoun County, our top-flight team is poised to produce even more stellar results for the Northern Virginia healthcare community in the not-too-distant future.