On Friday, Feb. 7, Holy Cross Hospital began tearing down its iconic boiler stack, which has been a hospital fixture and Capital Beltway landmark since the hospital opened in 1963. The 130-foot structure is being taken down to prepare for new technology that will replace it.
The boiler stack has served as an "exhaust pipe" for Holy Cross Hospital's three boilers. The boilers generate steam used for food preparation equipment, surgical instrument sterilization, heating of our potable water and to heat the hospital. It was built to run on diesel fuel and was converted to run on clean burning natural gas in the 1970s.
As part of the hospital's expansion, the original boiler stack was permanently removed from service in December and it was replaced with a temporary stainless steel boiler stack rising 75 feet tall.
A contractor who specializes in the removal of stacks of this nature will demolish the concrete structure in segments, starting at the top. It will take approximately four weeks to completely remove it.
A new, modern boiler plant will be located on the upper-most level of our new Patient Care Building, which is currently under construction and should be fully operational in January 2015.