Loews Vanderbilt Hotel

Loews Vanderbilt Hotel
Nashville, TN
Zac Marcengill
In Progress


Loew’s Vanderbilt Hotel was built in 1984 with little consideration for vibration sound isolation. Otherwise an architectural work of art in it’s day, the architects and/or builders failed to ensure that the large utility equipment on the roof of the build had the proper vibration suppressors installed. This resulted in in an enormous water cooler (called a chiller) that was anchored directly into the concrete roof structure, thus transmitting the full range of vibrations to the top floor office space below.

For many years the architecture firm that design this building occupied this top story office space, enduring the massive amount of low frequencies resulting from the chiller vibrating through the concrete roof. Maybe this was some type of self inflicted punishment for the oversight or maybe they used the area below the chiller for coffee and printers. Either way, when Vanderbilt took over this space a few years ago, their employees noticed and began to have health issues such as migraines, nausea, and dizziness.

Audio Virtue was called in to acoustically measure the office space noise and to provide solutions for these issues. Our motive was two fold: 1) find a solution that didn’t require hiring a crane to lift the chiller and install vibration suppressors & ¬†2) advocate for the office workers who were being effected by the vibration noise.

Audio Virtue provided a full report with acoustic measurements, work place standards from OSHA and from third party research, as well as solutions to absorb the sound entering the office space. Charlie, the buildings assistant engineers, then had the information he needed to present to the board so that a decision could be made.


Massive water chiller inside of green copper fence area above top floor offices.
Massive chiller directly mounted to concrete roof structure without vibration suppression.
Massive chiller directly mounted to concrete roof structure without vibration suppression.
Offices below massive chiller.


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