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Town Hall HVAC Geothermal Project Begins

Crews are preparing the town hall parking lot for the eventual drilling of wells for the geothermal system.

The has broken ground, as many residents who have visited the ripped up parking lot at Hicks Memorial Municipal center have noticed. The work began two weeks ago after the town signed a contract with W.J. Mountford Co. out of South Windsor to oversee the implementation of the approximately $3 million project. 

According to Tolland Energy Task Force chair Mark Summers, the work in the parking lot is just the first phase of construction. Summers explained that crews are currently digging in the parking lot to prepare for the eventual drilling of 40 400-feet deep wells in the town hall parking lot. The project should be complete around the fall of 2012, according to Summers.

The wells are one part of the closed loop system that will carry water, heated from the earth’s warmth, to heat pumps and a pipe system throughout town hall. Electricity will be needed to run the building’s 19 heat pumps as well as for some circulator pumps and fans to distribute the cooled and heated air.

In general, however, Summers says that the efficient system will save energy and money.

“It uses the least energy,” he said, adding that the system will operate at a lower cost than other options that the committee considered. Summers is familiar with geothermal systems since he uses the heating and cooling system at his home and his business,

The project will also include replacing town hall’s current heat pumps, upgrading duct work and investing in more efficient ceiling and lighting fixtures.

Residents approved the project at a with 683-480 vote. The project was originally approved for $3.6 million in bond funding, which is around $500,000 due to energy conservation bonds.

For more information on the project, visit the town’s Web site.

Steven Jones October 01, 2011 at 01:53 PM
Glad to see the work is moving along! Keep up the hard work and can't wait to see how it is moving next Summer.
Walter October 02, 2011 at 06:48 PM
I'm a mechanical engineer working closely with a high end architectural office. I have always been skeptical at best about geothermal for homes. Over the past year, I have been introduced to some solid concepts a procedures for geothermal hvac technology, but I was still not ready to commit to the technology...primarily because it is so unregulated. When the architectural firm I work with came to me to design the mechanical for a large custom home, I scoffed at the prospect of geothermal hvac. The owner gave me a copy of this book (Geothermal HVAC) and asked me to skim it. This book is like a breath of fresh air in a vast wasteland...it addresses the real issues without presuming to have to teach the technical aspects, which in my opinion is the demise of any new technology, trying to teach the common do-it-you-selfer (such as I am often called) how to design and install something that should be left to a highly trained professional. Cutting to the bottom line, I've followed the guidelines in the book, and I am busier in this depressed economy than I've been in the last 15 years (I have currently more than 20 projects going valued in the millions). People really want this, and they want to be convinced that we know of what we're speaking. Brilliantly written, easy to read, and right on the money. Google "Geothermal book"
Terry McIver October 03, 2011 at 12:12 PM
Geothermal is a good choice just be sure your payback time is practical

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