Interior shot of Des Moines' Central Campus' marine biology lab
Interior shot of Des Moines' Central Campus' training room space

Des Moines Public Schools Central Campus, Career and Technical Institute

Des Moines, Iowa

450,000 GSF

Since 2008, Alvine Engineering has been providing mechanical, electrical, and technology systems design for the Des Moines Public Schools Central Campus program facilities and the associated Career and Technical Institute and Campus Academy. A regional academy, the 4-building Central Campus facility serves over 3,000 students in a K-12 setting.

This multi-phase, multi-year project includes classrooms for a variety of programs: culinary arts (including three kitchens and cafeteria), marine biology, broadcasting and film, fashion design, merchandising, welding, automotive technology, auto collision, home building, and drywall program, at-risk youth program, and early childhood careers.

There were significant challenges involved in the renovation of this 450,000-square-foot building, including updating the mechanical system. The steam boiler, located in the sub-basement, is gradually being replaced with energy-efficient condensing boilers dedicated to each level, which will better respond to the needs of the diversity of programs located throughout the building. The original boiler remains operational until the completion of the last phase.


  • Voice evacuation fire alarm system and new code-compliant fire stairs.
  • Energy-efficient lighting with zoned control and daylight harvesting.
  • Unique LED lighting system in the media center and reception area.
  • Technology-ready classroom implementation.
  • Water-to-water heat pump system with dedicated outside air energy recovery units.
  • An energy-saving kitchen exhaust system utilizing variable frequency controllers to adjust exhaust and make-up airflow based on demand controls a temperature sensor at the kitchen hood.
  • A fuel- and energy-efficient paint booth with advanced cure technology to provide contamination control and ease of operation; a dust collection system and automotive exhaust system for contamination control dedicated to each respected program.

Photography credit: IRIS22 Productions LLC

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