FIGURE 2. Potential future downtown Pittsburgh district energy network.
trict energy system across the downtown
area of Pittsburgh.
UPTOWN SYSTEM CRUCIAL TO
INCREASED RESILIENCY, SYNERGIES
Clearway Energy’s Uptown system
is ideally located given the anticipated
development of the Lower Hill area and
the expressed interest of nearby buildings
to connect to the district energy network.
When the company acquired the land
for this plant from the Urban Redevelopment Authority, it actually purchased
a larger parcel than initially needed to
facilitate further growth. Table 2 provides
a summary of the system capacities for
the initial phase of the newly developed
Uptown plant and network. In this phase,
the plant provides steam, chilled water
and emergency electric power backup
service to the UPMC Mercy hospital.
THE UPTOWN SYSTEM IS IDEALLY LOCATED
GIVEN THE ANTICIPATED DEVELOPMENT
OF THE AREA AND INTEREST OF NEARBY
BUILDINGS TO CONNECT TO THE NETWORK.
In addition to the benefits the Uptown
system is delivering as a standalone operation, its central location provides the
additional value of enabling the interconnection of other downtown district energy
systems. This interconnectivity has the
potential to translate to increased resiliency and operating and efficiency synergies along with the improved economies
of scale of managing multiple systems as
one citywide system. Figure 2 shows this
potential future downtown district energy
Major development of the Uptown
neighborhood is all but certain in the near
future, and the area is already primed for
expansion of its new district energy infrastructure. Currently, many of the area’s
notable landmarks, including the Chatham
Center, City View Apartments and PPG
Paints Arena, are the types of buildings
that stand to benefit from connection to
district energy. Planned redevelopment of
the old Penguins’ arena site and the further addition of residential and commercial buildings present opportunities to
extend the network as the area grows.
TABLE 1. Key milestones in citywide district energy development in Pittsburgh.
Source: Clearway Energy, Inc.
IDEA performs a preliminary district energy assessment on the Pittsburgh Penguins’
Lower Hill development site.
The city of Pittsburgh signs an MOU with the Department of Energy to develop a clean
energy plan focused on district energy systems.
Clearway Energy, Inc. applies to the Urban Redevelopment Authority to purchase land
adjacent to the Pittsburgh Penguins’ PPG Paints Arena for the future Uptown district
The UPMC Mercy hospital commits to Clearway Energy as a future anchor customer of
the new Uptown district energy system.
PACT completes a district energy modernization master plan study for transforming its
100-plus-year-old legacy system.
Clearway breaks ground for the new Uptown district energy system.
The city of Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh and Danish government announce an
agreement to collaborate on energy planning and research including district heating
planning and microgrid feasibility assessments.
Clearway Energy’s Uptown district energy system begins providing steam to UPMC
Mercy; chilled-water and backup electric power service start in June 2018.
The Pittsburgh Penguins announce development plans for the Lower Hill site next to
the Uptown district energy system – a system expansion opportunity.
TABLE 2. Energy Center Pittsburgh Uptown district energy system, initial phase.
7. 5 M W
Source: Clearway Energy, Inc.
Chilled-water system installed capacity
Steam system installed capacity
Electric generator backup installed capacity
Direct-buried high-density polyethylene chilled-water distribution piping
Direct-buried steam and condensate distribution piping
Direct-buried emergency power duct bank and feeder cables