Thinking Inside the Box: A New Twist on Proven Technologies

GHT recently held an internal competition to recognize the most innovative MEP engineering solution developed by our staff in 2011. We were expecting the votes to pour in for designs using the newest, coolest products, but the top honor went to a solution that was developed by combining elements of products that have been on the market for years – in a whole new way.

Senior Principal John McGee was the winner for his design of an innovative air distribution system, the Hybrid Parallel Low Temperature VAV Terminal. He developed it in response to two of our clients’ most pressing needs: energy savings and maximum ceiling height. John’s design combines the best features of both Parallel and Series VAV systems, powered by an energy-efficient ECM motor. This was the first time an ECM motor had been used on a parallel fan unit, an innovation that Krueger was instrumental in achieving. To make the system even more efficient, John designed the new VAVs around a cold-air delivery system. The final result is a solution that saves energy, is incredibly quiet, and requires minimal ductwork.

Often called the “GHT Box” among industry professionals, John’s innovation is now being manufactured by Krueger, Titus, and Enviro-Tec. It has been successfully implemented at three of our projects in Washington, DC: PNC Place, Constitution Square, and The HSC Foundation.

Has your organization put a fresh spin on a proven approach? Brag about it by letting us know!


Craig Eichenlaub, PE, LEED AP is a GHT Senior Principal and Building Systems Studio Principal-in-Charge. He also serves on GHT’s Executive Committee and provides operational, financial, and technical leadership to the firm. A respected member of the A/E/C community for over 30 years, Craig consistently shares his knowledge and experience with clients and peers as part of his dedication to advance the industry.