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Sunday, June 4, 2023

Metro Vancouver signs deal with River District Energy to heat neighbourhood

A new energy centre facility in the River District in Vancouver will help heat the neighbourhood, drawing energy from Metro Vancouver’s Waste-to-Energy Facility located nearby in Burnaby.

River District Energy will be Metro Vancouver District Energy Project’s first customer, with service scheduled to come online in 2025, reducing GHGs and the amount of natural gas needed to heat homes and businesses in the neighbourhood. The district energy system works by using underground pipes to deliver hot water to nearby homes and businesses.

The new energy centre will provide heat and hot water for 18,000 residents and more than half-a-million square feet of office and retail space in the River District, once the neighbourhood is fully built out.

“Metro Vancouver is committed to being part of the solution in the fight against climate change, and we are thrilled to partner with River District Energy providing cost effective energy in the pursuit of lower emissions and energy efficient communities,” said Sav Dhaliwal, chair of Metro Vancouver’s board of directors.

Metro Vancouver’s Waste-to-Energy Facility in Burnaby handles about a quarter of the region’s garbage and generates approximately 22 megawatts of electricity — enough to power nearly 16,000 homes — which it sells to BC Hydro.

Exterior view - River District Energy project
Along Marine Way, the design purposefully reveals prime views of the interior structure and equipment allowing for vertical spans of glazing through which pedestrians and vehicles experience the space, each one according to their relative speed and distance. An opening through the main boiler hall’s corridor gives insight into the centre’s process and its operation from the control room. Credit: TKA+D

The first phase of bringing the plans to fruition will involve building an energy centre next to Metro Vancouver’s Waste-to-Energy Facility in Burnaby and a pipe system that will deliver hot water to River District.

Construction of the Community Energy Centre in River District, which will receive hot water and heat from Metro Vancouver and distribute it to the community, will begin in 2023. The architects are TKAD Architecture + design and the building will be located at 3565 Sawmill Crescent, just off Marine Way. A development application is currently before the City of Vancouver.

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Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner is an experienced journalist and media relations professional, based in Vancouver. As founder of urbanYVR.com, he has been reporting on urban development across the Lower Mainland since 2016, and has also served as vice-chair of the Gastown Historic Area Planning Committee. In October 2022, he was elected to Vancouver city council and is no longer actively reporting for urbanYVR.

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