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LBNL NERSC 9 Facility Upgrade
Berkeley, CA
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LBNL NERSC 9 Facility Upgrade

Extensive upgrades and new equipment for the mechanical and electrical infrastructure supporting a next-generation, high-performance supercomputing system.


Berkeley, CA


Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


Critical Engineering Group


140,000 s.f.



Market Sector


Delivery Method

Construction Management At Risk (CMAR)

XL Construction worked to prepare Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Shyh Wang Hall for the installation of a next-generation, high-performance supercomputing system for the Department of Energy’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC). The new computer system, called NERSC 9, is more than triple the center’s computational power, which serves more than 7,000 scientists and 600 projects annually. XL supported the mechanical and electrical demands of NERSC 9 by installing additional power and cooling equipment to expand existing capacity at the site. XL’s scope included preconstruction and construction of new water cooling towers, pumps, heat exchangers, air handling units, exhaust fans, electrical substations, distribution equipment, site prep and – ultimately – final connections for one of the largest, fastest computing centers in the world.

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I’d like to take an opportunity to commend XL Construction and the team’s response to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Once the local governments determined activities across the area would pause, XL was fairly quick with creating a Pandemic Response Plan. As Alameda County issued Health Directives allowing construction activity to resume, XL worked diligently with the EH&S Division to ensure health and safety protocols were in compliance with CDC guidelines and Alameda County Health Orders. With that noted, XL Construction and Bill Barba, XL Safety Manager, have been proactive in establishing safe work areas throughout the Building 59 site. There is adequate signage and sanitizing stations, and the trade crews are reminded to wear facial coverings and remain socially separated.
As you know, XL Construction has been on the Building 59 site for two years and has maintained a clean safety record. The past two months since returning to construction activity at LBL, XL has exceeded expectations with the added safety precautions implemented. XL Construction is to be commended and recognized for their continual efforts in setting the bar high for construction safety.

David Topete
Project Manager, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

On behalf of TKK LLC , and as a Construction Manager working with XL Construction on the NERSC N9 Upgrades project, we would like to take this time during the Covid 19 interruption on this project to thank you and your team for your many efforts.
This project has had many challenges, its scope has grown by many millions of dollars and its complexity is no small effort. Your team of Bobby, Patrick, Bill and Patrick Riley have been up to the task in trying circumstances. Our safety record is unblemished, the many RFIs and submittals are being resolved, and the synergy of your subcontractors makes our efforts productive.
I look forward to our restart when these trying times are over.

Randy Farrell
Construction Manager, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

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