PROJECT UPDATE: The West Village Park and District Energy Utility (also known as West Village Energy Centre) is in the final stages of construction and is scheduled for completion later this year. This joint initiative by the City of Surrey Parks and Surrey City Energy will address the growing need for park space for recreation and civic gathering in Surrey’s new West Village neighbourhood and become the City’s first permanent district energy facility providing the neighbourhood’s new high density developments with heating and hot water.
District energy systems produce hot water in centralized facilities for distribution through a pipe system to all new developments within the district. The West Village Energy Centre, located within West Village Park, will be home to Surrey City Energy as the first permanent district energy facility. At the start, the new energy centre will rely on natural gas, however, the long term plan is to entirely phase out the use of fossil fuels and replace them with energy sources such as organic waste, solar thermal and biomass sources. Since the end of 2017, Surrey City Energy also incorporates renewable energy generated from geothermal wells installed under the City Hall.
West Village Park and District Energy Centre represents the City’s goals to reduce their carbon footprint, through an expressive and open approach to urban infrastructure. The first of multiple parks planned for Surrey’s City Centre, West Village introduces the community to distinct architecture built around a mass timber structure. The park space and the energy centre balance each other with the plant’s compact design complementing the large park space. To minimize the building’s bulk in the compact urban setting, the boiler plant floor has been lowered by more than 5 metres (18’) below grade, which invites community members and pedestrians to peek down through the large glazed open façades to view the internal functions of the energy centre.
The City of Surrey, through a public arts competition, has engaged Canadian artist Erica Stocking to produce pieces speaking to complimentary themes of health and community engagement. Erica’s sculptures – a series of blankets – will be mounted on the energy centre’s exhaust stacks. A series of commemorative blankets are being woven to share with neighbours.