National Design Build Services LLC
- Written by: Felicia Fox
- Produced by: Chuck McKenna
- Estimated reading time: 6 mins
Mechanical design-build firm National Design Build Services LLC (NDBS) excels in the design and installation of air conditioning, heating, ventilation and refrigeration systems. The NDBS team’s knowledge and experience provides customers with superbly engineered solutions and simplified installations from both a first-cost and lifecycle perspective.
The company, founded in 2007, has proven its commitment to excellence in each of its 150 projects in over 25 states to-date. Due to the team’s dedication to engineering, quality and customer service, NDBS has achieved status as an industry leader in providing the finest turnkey installations in the market.
The company’s low overhead approach to what has traditionally been a high overhead market allows NDBS to compete in markets across the country. The company focuses on first cost, an innovative product offering, efficient design and unsurpassed customer service.
In order to meet its goal and maintain its reputation, NDBS partners with experienced local contractors and manages the HVAC installation during the construction period. The company’s process ensures each client receives the highest quality mechanical designs with unmatched attention to detail. Furthermore, NDBS’ approach to both design and construction guarantees clients’ timetables are met and projects are completed below budget.
A team to back it
The company’s expertise is backed by the design and construction team’s 75 years of combined experience. Jim Vineyard, LEED AP, and Ben Vacca, P.E., both company principals, founded NDBS in 2007. Vineyard and Vacca work alongside a highly capable support team of engineers and architectural professionals to ensure the company is always on track for success.
From the company’s office in St. Peters, Missouri, the team’s vast experience allows NDBS to tackle a wide range of projects. NDBS’ portfolio includes work with medical and surgical facilities, manufacturing facilities, clean rooms, laboratories, office buildings, refrigerated warehouses and large distribution centers.
The company’s experienced LEED professionals consistently deliver cost-effective, sustainable green projects to clients across the board. NDBS’ pre-construction services provide customers with an accurate evaluation of budget costs and timeline to meet construction goals. The company’s self-implemented commissioning policy ensures that all equipment functions per the design intent when the job is completed.
“Regardless of whether or not the project is meeting LEED certification requirements or third-party commissioning standards, we go out and test all of our jobs,” details Vacca. “We do this because when we finish a job, we want to know everything is working correctly. We take great pride in our work.”
Vineyard goes on to note that system commissioning is a service NDBS is proud to offer on its own. “I think this is really what sets us apart,” he reiterates. “Customers remember the last project you completed for them – so our approach is to take the time, spend the money and commission every system that we install, regardless of size or complexity. This ensures that we know that all components of our systems have been tested, which leads to a satisfied customer in the end.”
Furthermore, the team provides a detailed sequence of operations for every project. “The sequence explains to the end user how each piece of equipment is designed to function once up and running,” Vineyard details. “For the commissioning process, we write a test script based on the sequence of operations that will test every function. This guarantees that the equipment operates the way we intended, and if not, we either need to amend the sequence or determine if the equipment is malfunctioning. Ultimately, the sequence of operations must be accurate so that we can turn the building over to the owner and they will be able to understand how their equipment functions.”
Additionally, NDBS utilizes BIM as a crucial tool for design coordination. The team will be employing BIM when tackling a half mile-long manufacturing facility in South Carolina this year.
To accommodate the various manufacturing processes, there are 15 different platform elevations throughout the facility. This requires that all MEPFP trades, along with the project’s architect and structural designer, accurately represent the allotted construction space so that BIM’s clash detection features can be utilized to ensure constructability. The completed model will also be useful during construction by allowing contractors and field installers to cut sections at any point in the building to get a better understanding of how ductwork, piping, conduits and structural members interact at each level.
Sustainable projects that delight
NDBS’s commitment to quality and excellence is evident, as is reflected in every design and project. Jeremy Krueger, P.E., head of NDBS operations remarks on several of the NDBS team’s recent accomplishments.
The company recently completed an installation in Victoria, Texas, at Caterpillar’s Hydraulic Excavator assembly plant. Krueger explains that the notable 800,000-square-foot facility provides sub-assembly, assembly, painting and final inspection areas for various hydraulic excavator models.
The space includes office and logistics areas, which are served by indoor variable air volume (VAV) chilled water air handling units and VAV terminal units with electric heating to ensure zone control. Under roof there are also FEMA shelters, assembly stations, an industrial paint line, inspection areas and excavator testing conveyor lines, which test the engines upon final assembly. The conveyor line is equipped with a source capture system for point-of-use exhaust, and general exhaust fans controlled by CO detectors to maintain CO concentrations well below OSHA requirements.
The building’s mechanical system boasts a central water-cooled chiller plant, consisting of three 800-ton high efficiency centrifugal chillers with variable speed drives. The system also includes three cooling towers with variable speed fans, three variable speed condenser water pumps, as well as three variable speed chilled water pumps to adjust for changing loads in the variable-primary chilled water distribution piping network.
Additionally, the facility’s assembly area has McQuay roof-mounted, chilled-water air handling units with coil bypass dampers for humidity control, variable speed supply and return fans for building pressure control, modulating chilled water control valves and modulating gas heat exchangers with 20:1 turndown capability.
Providence-based United Natural Foods, a national distributor of natural and organic foods, also called on NDBS for its highly sought-after services for the company’s new Denver, Colorado, facility. For this client, NDBS designed a new office and distribution center, as well as a truck maintenance facility.
NDBS worked with Arco Design/Build to deliver the design and installation of the HVAC systems. The 42,000-square-foot office space is conditioned using packaged VAV rooftop units and parallel fan terminal units for zone control. Additionally, the 500,000-square-foot warehouse is heated in the winter with direct-fired make up air units while roof-mounted exhaust fans interlocked with wall louvers and integral actuated dampers ventilate the space in the summer. Krueger is proud to note that the highly efficient systems NDBS utilized in this project helped the facility owner achieve LEED Gold certification.
Krueger goes on to note that the new Express Scripts high-volume fill facility in New Jersey was also a notable project for the team. NDBS was called in to aid in completion of the project after several design delays and construction issues put the turnover date in jeopardy. In the past year, the team has also tackled outpatient surgical facilities in Florida, Colorado, Maryland, Texas and Arizona.
Krueger explains that the company will strive to grow over the coming years, yet will continue to maintain its commitment to NDBS’ current customer base, which has helped get the company to where it is today.
“Our customers know they can count on us to get the job done,” Krueger says proudly. “Our customers call us when they need results.” It is evident that National Design Build Services LLC is worthy of its reputation. The team has a number of repeat customers and continues to deliver time and again, always meeting or exceeding clients’ expectations.
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