St. Jude Medical Center

Located in Fullerton, California, St. Jude Medical Center is one of the most respected and technologically advanced hospitals in Southern California. With nearly 700 physicians on staff, St. Jude offers nearly every medical specialty and subspecialty through all stages of life.

The four-story diagnostic and treatment medical center consist of 120 patient beds, 14 operating rooms, including a hybrid operating and MRI suite, full kitchen and cafeteria, and 17,000 square foot central utility plant. Southland Engineering provided mechanical and plumbing design for the nearly 200,000 square foot facility.

Approach & Innovations

As patient, staff, and public safety are primary concerns within healthcare facilities, Southland Engineering designed a 100 percent outside air system to eliminate the possibility of recirculating infectious agents. The system is designed to provide significant future flexibility to adapt to medical and technological advancement.

To meet the energy goals of the project, a runaround heat recovery system was designed and installed. With small pumps on the roof and heat recovery piping under the roof for the rooftop air handling units and exhaust air units, the system has a significant impact on the medical facility’s energy consumption. In order to avoid increased pressure drops and fan energy use, bypass dampers were incorporated in the air handling unit design to bypass the heat recovery and chilled water coils when not in use.

Southland Engineering also utilized high-efficiency water cooling chillers with variable frequency drives to provide a standalone central utility plant near the healthcare facility. Energy used for cooling is the largest component of energy consumption, so providing the most efficient system possible was critical for the facility.


Client: St. Joseph Health Systems

Location: Fullerton, California


Square Footage: 197,000