Dental Branch/BREF/Neuroscience

UT Health Science Center Houston


Shah Smith & Associates, Inc. provided mechanical, electrical, and plumbing design for a Central Plant and electrical design engineering services for a state-of-the-art Biomedical Research and Education Facility and the Neuroscience Building and Dental Branch, which are part of the Research Park Complex. It encompasses 450,000 SF and comprise three independent programs functionally connected into one facility rather than as detached, stand-alone structures. The three projects are the Dental Branch Replacement Building, the Neuroscience Building, and the BREF.

The BREF primarily contains research and support spaces, both wet labs and dry labs, with a focus on adult stem cell studies.  Exploration of stem cell discoveries and new cell therapies with collaborators, such as the Texas Heart Institute and M. D. Anderson’s scientists require multiple tissue culture laboratories.  This facility also includes a 22,800 SF vivarium.

The Neuroscience Building is occupied primarily by faculty and staff of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston.  Collaborative neuroscience research involves about 250 faculty, fellows, residents and staff in addition to outpatients and participants in clinical studies.

The University of Texas Dental Branch Dental School is completed with classrooms, clinics and research spaces.

The central plant consist of three-1500 ton chillers and one 1250 ton variable speed chiller. The chilled water system is variable primary flow. Stainless steel cross-flow cooling towers are located on the roof. Steam is generated at 100 psig (saturated) using two-24,000 MBH and one-3,400 MBH low NOx (30 ppm) fire tube boilers. The control system is a conventional building automation system.

The central plant also includes vacuum pumps, air compressors, and RO water equipment.