Wilmington street sweepers have new energy-efficient home

Posted by Debra Worley - email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The City of Wilmington has recycled an old building in an effort to start building a greener future.

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held Thursday to officially open the new home for the city's street sweepers.

Energy-efficient renovations were made to an abandoned building, including the addition of solar panels, light sensors, and the use of natural light.

Officials said the facility is a model for future city projects and a proud development for storm water services.

"I think it is a point of pride for the guys to have this new building to work out of because they do work in the dirt," said Stormwater Services Supervisor Jeremy Thorpe.  "They do work in the grime and they have a nice new building that's energy efficient that people are looking at.  We get a lot of people that ask questions about this building, it gives us a chance to talk about the building and the other things we do."

Most of the sweeping work happens in downtown Wilmington.  The new location will allow crews to get to work faster, saving time and money.

The 6,000 square foot building features green technologies and environmentally friendly building techniques. Features of the new facility include:

  • Site and building re‐use - The city is reusing a building it already owned; much of the existing structure was also reused in construction, including the roof, steel, lumber and concrete slab.
  • Solar power ‐ Solar panels installed on the roof produce enough electricity to power the entire building, and there is also the potential to produce extra electricity for financial credit from the power company each month.
  • Radiant floor heating ‐ Solar panels on the roof heat water that is pumped through tubing in the floor of the building to provide heat during the winter.
  • Stormwater runoff ‐ To capture runoff flowing from the site, several stormwater improvements were installed, including a bioretention area that treats runoff from the parking lot and rooftop. Also, a significant amount of asphalt that causes stormwater runoff was removed and a cistern was installed to capture runoff from the roof. The rainwater captured from the roof will be used to irrigate the surrounding landscape.

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