David J. Smith headshot

David Smith to Present at 2023 CampusEnergy

David Smith will share findings from a higher education client’s recent electrification project at the 36th Annual Campus Energy Conference, February 28th in Grapevine, Texas. Dave’s session, “Decarbonizing College Campuses through Infrastructure,” will explore how a fully electric chiller plant shifted our client off natural gas while maintaining system reliability. Burns helps our clients navigate… Read More

Charlton St rendering

Burns Designs Resilient Back-Up Power for Princeton University’s New ES & SEAS Complex

Burns is leading a collaborative effort to provide resilient power for a new 660,000-square-feet complex on Princeton University’s campus. In close coordination with the university’s facilities staff, Burns is leading a team of specialists to design and oversee construction of two 2-Megawatt (MW) generators. Design techniques will mitigate noise and automate emergency back-up power, complying… Read More

St John's University, Photo Credit: H.L.I.T., licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Burns Supports St. John’s University Decarbonization Efforts

Burns is supporting the electrification of St. John’s University Law School as part of a larger shift off fossil fuels. Acting as the engineer of record, Burns is designing replacements for the law school’s steam fired absorption machine and steam fired domestic hot water systems. The upgrades will facilitate campus-wide efforts to lower carbon emissions… Read More

Burns’ Guide to Decarbonizing College Campuses

Electrification is transforming colleges and universities, establishing higher education institutions as leaders on the forefront of sustainability.  For many, decarbonization’s greatest challenge will be a large-scale overhaul of campus heating systems. Achieving carbon neutrality will involve new power sources, large-scale retrofits of mechanical systems, more energy-efficient buildings, and a new generation of smart controls. Decarbonization… Read More

Photo credit: © Jeffrey Totaro, 2022

Burns Supports University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School Renovations

Continuing our long-standing role as an engineering partner for the University of Pennsylvania, Burns is designing mechanical and electrical system upgrades at historic Silverman Hall. Supporting Voith & Mactavish Architects, Burns will integrate contemporary facility designs into the Baroque-styled Carey Law School. Mechanical upgrades will improve comfort, performance and efficiency within the building’s classroom and… Read More

Penn Museum

University of Pennsylvania Enhances Steam System Redundancy

The University of Pennsylvania recently completed construction of a redundant steam distribution pipeline, improving reliability, safety and performance for the campus-wide heating system. A high-efficiency district energy system connects Vicinity Energy’s Philadelphia steam-generation plant to the university through multiple access points. To bolster steam-supply redundancy and to enhance building comfort, Burns provided mechanical design and… Read More

Michael P. Walton, PE

Mike Walton, PE Energizes Burns’ Facilities Engineering Services

Burns announces the promotion of Mike Walton, PE to the role of Vice President, Facilities and Infrastructure. Mike leads Burns’ industry-leading suite of advanced-power, zero-emission mobility, and high-performance facility engineering services. Working across disciplines, Mike has a unique ability to bring design solutions to life, effectively communicating with his team, partners and clients to overcome… Read More

Pratt Institute

Burns Undertakes Upgrades to Historic Pratt Institute Steam System

Burns is leading an overhaul of the high-pressure steam system at Pratt Institute’s 25-acre Brooklyn campus. The upgrade will ultimately achieve a reduction in the fine arts university’s greenhouse gas emissions and facilitate compliance with New York City’s Climate Mobilization Act. Consistent with a university goal of reducing emissions 40 percent by 2040, Pratt plans… Read More

Exterior view of DuBois College House Residence Hall

Burns Oversees University of Pennsylvania Air Conditioning Upgrades

The University of Pennsylvania recently completed improvements to the last five dorms on campus without air conditioning. As a subconsultant to CICADA Architecture, Burns performed feasibility studies, design and construction-administration services for the two-year project. Engineering services included mechanical, electrical, plumbing and structural disciplines. The university extended campus chilled water services to reach King’s Court,… Read More

Burns Helps NYU Increase Infrastructure Reliability

Burns is currently working with New York University (NYU) to increase the reliability and efficiency of mechanical and plumbing pumping systems across its campus – a massive campus that accommodates over 40,000 students, and has buildings spread throughout the city, from midtown Manhattan to Greenwich Village, and even downtown Brooklyn. Burns performed extensive field surveys… Read More


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