CITY CENTRE — The City of Surrey broke ground at the West Village Energy Centre and Park on Wednesday (June 28).
The project, at 10357 133 St., includes a mini-neighbourhood park but also the city’s first permanent district energy facility.
The city says these are two “key pieces of sustainable infrastructure” for the City Centre neighbourhood.
Surrey City Energy is the city-owned district energy utility that currently provides heat and hot water to buildings in parts of City Centre.
It will eventually be expanded to make its heat and water service available to the whole City Centre area.
The city says the system is “central to providing a renewable energy future for Surrey.”
“Surrey is committed to investing in sustainable infrastructure like the West Village Energy Centre,” said Mayor Linda Hepner in a release. “This new district energy system is a cost-efficient and environmentally sustainable way of supplying heat and hot water to buildings. The West Village Energy Centre will be integrated as part of the new West Village Park, the first of a number of parks planned in City Centre to provide essential green spaces in this fast growing urban neighbourhood.”
A release says that while the initial phases of the system are fueled by high-efficiency natural gas boilers, low-carbon heating sources are being added over time.
By the end of 2017, buildings serviced by Surrey City Energy will be heated with energy supplied by geothermal wells underneath City Hall. Future energy sources will likely include organic waste, solar energy, and biomass from clean waste wood.
The energy centre is being built not only as a functional facility, states a city release, but as a part of the park, with “interpretive” and “educational” components.
West Village Park willl include a contemporary urban space, lounging space, a playground, plaza and “sustainable” park features.
Councillor Burce Hayne noted this is one of 10 planned parks for the neighbourhood,.
“Park space is essential to building complete, healthy communities,” he added.
Visit surrey.ca/districtenergy for more information.