Facilities begins upgrading residential fire safety systems


As part of MIT's long-range infrastructure renewal program, fire safety systems on campus will be upgraded.

The Fire Safety Systems Renewal Program, which will evaluate, upgrade and (where necessary) replace older systems, already has begun for residential buildings. This six-year effort, which has an annual budget of $5 million, will include all fire alarms, sprinklers, fire stops, doors, egress lighting, emergency generators to support the egress lighting, and the resolution of miscellaneous safety hazards that compromise fire safety. It also includes new central systems for the Operations Center.

The Department of Facilities, Office of Residential Life and Student Life Programs, and the Safety Office have teamed up on the project; Facilities will oversee and manage outside contractors.

An IAP program was offered by members of the project team, engineering consultants and equipment manufacturers with detailed information on fire safety systems including fire alarms, sprinklers and emergency power. It also focused on the work planned for residential life buildings during the coming year.

The project team will host future meetings with housemasters, house managers and house presidents to discuss the project. Meetings will also be held in each residence to review the engineering and design documents, as well as to provide construction coordination.

Construction work will be scheduled in each building according to occupancy, operating restrictions and level of disruption. Buildings have been given work priorities using National Fire Protection Association rankings for building characteristics such as building construction, type and occupancy.

Buildings currently in the design phase include Buildings 62, 64, NW61 and W85. Completion of the West Campus fire loop has been added to the schedule to accommodate additional sprinkler loads.

Emergency power generation systems in several buildings will also need to be replaced. Several natural-gas-fired generators will be replaced with diesel units, and others will be adapted with equipment to conserve water.

The project will establish a web site with design information, scheduling and work-scope data by building.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on February 9, 2000.


Topics: Campus services

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